‘Broken process’ of omnibus bill reveals unnecessary spending that fiscally threatens our democracy
The House passed the $1.5 trillion 2022 omnibus bill during the wee hours of the morning Wednesday. The Senate approved it on Thursday. It’s an enormous bill that is over 2,700 pages long and contains irresponsible spending on a myriad of unnecessary government programs.
Yet, as bad as that is, the worst part is that many lawmakers who voted on the bill didn’t even read it. Despite this, it passed with bipartisan support. Many Republicans expressed dismay at the secrecy of the entire process, the $1.5 trillion price tag, and not having time to vet the bill’s contents before voting on it.
“My mom said nothing good happens after 10 p.m., certainly nothing good happens after midnight, and Pelosi’s bill is just another example of nothing good happens after midnight,” Rep. Lauren Boebert, a Colorado Republican, told me in an interview.
“Congress doesn’t know about what’s in the bill they’re passing, but we have to do this in an expedited manner so that Democrats can catch their buses and head off to Philly for their Democrat retreat,” Boebert said. “The whole process is completely broken.”
A lot of the anger stems from the time in which the bill was passed. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejects the claim that it was done in the wee hours of the morning, as many Republicans claim. However, the text on the bill itself at the bottom-left corner of every page reads, “March 9, 2022 (12:12 a.m.).”
Additionally, congressional Republicans felt the process to vote on the bill was purposefully rushed to prevent vetting of the contents of the $1.5 trillion legislation. And there was also some resentment because of the bill’s contents, especially for a country that is $30 trillion in debt.
For example, one section of the omnibus details “funds appropriated” to promote Pakistan’s democracy and gender programs. Another section of the bill allocates $40 million for “democracy programs” in Venezuela. There is also money earmarked for a plaque honoring the names of the police officers who “responded to the violence that occurred at the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021.”
“This year’s omnibus spending package is just another wish list fulfilled for the Radical Left to expand the size of the federal government while ignoring the needs and priorities of Americans,” Rep. Matt Rosendale, a Montana Republican, said. “It is far past time to rein in federal spending and start paying off our national debt, and the American taxpayer deserves a government that is fiscally responsible and prioritizes their needs.”
David Ditch, an analyst with the Heritage Foundation, tweeted a list of what was contained in the omnibus bill. There is an allocation of $2 million for George Mason University’s “Center for Climate Change Communication.” Another section includes $2 million to reduce inequities in access to solar power and another $4.2 million set aside for sheep experiment stations in Idaho. Equity is financed further, with $1.6 million dedicated to “equitable growth of shellfish aquaculture industry in Rhode Island.” A total of $1.4 million was set aside for “environmental justice” at Morehouse College, a historically black college in Atlanta.
The omnibus bill also dedicates millions of taxpayer dollars to promoting left-wing orthodoxies such as diversity and inclusion. This included spending $3.5 million to address a “lack of diversity in the maternity care workforce” and a total of $94 million dedicated to “training for diversity” in the health workforce. Another $500,000 would be spent on an “educational equity” center at Rutgers University in New Jersey.
“But this is Democrat 101, right? Use a crisis to create a slush fund of spending for a Democrat wish list,” Boebert told me.
It would be in the country’s best interest if the legislators could read the bill rather than rush to pass it. It should raise flags that the bill passed both the House and the Senate while many members said they did not have the opportunity to read what was in the bill. As inflation soars and our national debt continues to hit record levels, at some point, fiscal responsibility needs to be prioritized. Otherwise, our country will be doomed to a financial collapse.
“The $1.5 trillion dollar omnibus came in 2,741 pages that Democrats dropped in the middle of the night before the vote. The 6.7% increase in non-defense spending will have a drastic impact on our nation’s economy and will undoubtedly exacerbate the already-historic 40-year high inflation we are experiencing,” Rep. Greg Steube, a Florida Republican, told me.
“This is no way to run a country,” Steube said.