Earmarks Marked For Destruction
The power of a cute response can't be underestimated for a politician looking to escape looking like a flip flopper. Watch Jim DeMint deflect responsibility for being a leader in the campaign against earmarks while having also been part of the earmark culture.
What is the best defense against the argument that earmarks are a tiny amount of money and local reps are better at determining where money should be spent than a Washington bureaucrat? Britt Hume lays it out:
You get some great, big, whopper bill that has got all kinds of stuff in it that you might be able to rally people against because it's so excessive, but if individual members have got their little project that they've promised in their home district or state, in the bill, even though it isn't adding to the overall amount, they are going to be more inclined to support it. And that is a lot about the whole appropriation process -- you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours, you'll get your earmarks, I get -- and pretty soon you can pass anything.
Few politicians will ever give you an accurate explanation for anything, so you have to assemble a complete picture on your own.