Pork Barreling Essay

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Pork barrel legislations is a daily occurrence in American government. Howard Scarrow showcases this in his May 6th column in The Village Times Herald, "Our bacon, their park." His example of the recently proposed highway bill is a blatant exposure of pork barrel legislation. He indicates many causes of this distributive politics that would lead to legislation such as the highway bill. Pork barrel legislation allows for a congressman to appeal to his constituents by adding on seemingly small projects that would benefit his district, to a larger bill. This small portion of the legislation is usually overlooked and passed along with the main part of the bill. In a way distributive politics is a sneaky way for congressmen to "bring home…show more content…
Pork barrel legislation is a way for congressmen to show their voters what great projects they can get funded and use those programs to get reelected.

Distributive politics has flourished in American government because of legislative processes in Congress. Pet projects like those in the highway bill are possible in American government. James Madison said that America did not need to worry about factions because in such a large country there would be so many factions that they would cancel each other out. What Madison did not anticipate was that these factions would work together to further their own agendas. A sort of "I'll vote for your part of the bill if you vote for mine." Passing legislation is such a long and complicated process that can be simplified if the bill just passes. So if every congressmen has a part of the bill that benefits his district, the bill will be easier to pass. Committees are put together so that the work in congress can be split up. This results in many bills being passed strictly based on pork barrel issues. No one opposes anything because to rework a bill is too much work. And why vote down a bill when your district will benefit from it being passed.

The consequences of federal pork barreling are today's public opinions of Congress. Voters express a sixty percent approval rating of their own personal representatives. However, voters opinion of Congress as a
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