bob gibbs

House GOP Touts Water Bill as a Sign of Thriving, Post-Earmark World

The water bill heading for a final vote is earmark free, after a long process and compromise from Shuster, left and Rahall, among others. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated, May 17, 3:31 p.m. |  The notion of passing a major infrastructure bill through the House and Senate without earmarks seemed, at first, unthinkable.  

After all, it's a highly dysfunctional Congress, there's an army of outside conservative groups ready to thwart legislation that doesn't meet their standards and members from both parties have complained an earmark moratorium is a reason it's tough to get anything done.