WASHINGTON (TND) — A Democratic congressman used the omnibus spending bill to secure millions in funding for his brother's city.
Open the Books founder Adam Andrzejewski joined The National Desk’s Jan Jeffcoat Friday morning to discuss where these tax dollars are going for Rep. Jim Cooper.
The $1.7 trillion spending bill was packed with $16 billion worth of earmarks, including for Cooper, a Democrat from Tennessee. He earmarked a total of nearly $18 million, and one was for the city of Nashville where his brother John Cooper is mayor.
Andrzejewski called earmarks the "currency of corruption" in Congress.
"These earmarks were used to grease the latest omnibus spending bill which ended up being $1.7 trillion," he said. "So you got Jim Cooper, he’s on his way out the door in terms of retirement. He gets 10 picks, 10 earmark picks of special projects locally doled out by the House speaker and two out of the 10 actually go to his brother's unit of government, Metro Nashville. And that's nepotism. That's exactly what people all across the country are sick and tired of their member of Congress doing."
Andrzejewski says local projects should be funded locally and not with federal tax dollars. He pointed to the "Earmark Database" as a way to see where money is going in which state.
“You can see your member of Congress, what project that they earmark money to, how much and for what purpose, and you can do that at openthebooks.com, just go to the map section and click on earmarks," Andrzejewski said.