Don't take my word for it. Just listen to what the most influential collection of conservative navel-noodlers in Washington says. The Heritage Foundation's stated mission could double as the Republican Party's: "formulate and promote conservative public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values and a strong national defense." Just last week, it issued a broadside that differed dramatically from McConnell's assessment of the first session of the 110th Congress...
The bill Congress rang up, according to the Heritage Foundation, is "$20 billion more than lawmakers would have you believe."
The way Heritage economists figure it, this Omnibus Appropriations Bill in which McConnell boasted about "defending Kentucky priorities" (1) was irresponsible in failing to keep discretionary outlays within President Bush's cap of $932 billion; (2) resorted to "budget gimmicks and loopholes to fudge the numbers"; (3) classified non-emergency spending as emergency items; (4) "piled on the pork by earmarking billions to more than 11,300" pet projects for members, and (5) "put the government more than $20 billion over budget."
This is the judgment not of some effete, lib-symp moral relativist -- some redistributionist-friendly class warrior of the Democratic left. Rather, it comes from McConnell's friends at the most powerful Republican-friendly think tank in Washington.