Politics

"If We Can't Stop It, We Can't Stop Anything"

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I'll pave that runway in bacon! Just watch!

Remember the John Murtha—Johnstown Cambria County Airport? Named after pork-barreler extraordinaire Rep. John C. Murtha (D-Pa.), the airport has scooped up about $150 million in defense appropriations over the years—from a committee Murtha just happens to chair. It serves about 20 people a day, and the only flights are to Washington, D.C. Dozens, perhaps hundreds of news outlets covered this story of waste over the last several months, after the airport snagged an additional $800,000 in stimulus funds to pave a backup runway.

Thanks to all that coverage, a Google News search for Murtha is topped by this quotable quote from the man himself:

"If I'm corrupt, it's because I take care of my district"

 This afternoon, the Senate voted on an amendment to kill $1.4 million in annual spending on the airport. The amendment failed, 53-43.

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) proposed the amendment. He sums the situation up tidily and bleakly. "This is something we need to stop. If we can't stop it, we can't stop anything."

For more, watch and weep.

Reason has been weeping and gnashing its teeth about this for a while now.