Club for Growth Removes Four GOP Freshmen From Anti-Pork List

Posted April 22, 2009 at 5:12pm

Updated: 10:05 p.m.The conservative Club for Growth updated its list of lawmakers swearing off earmarks on Wednesday, removing four Republican freshmen who the club now says should not have been on its list at all because they did not promise to abstain from earmarks.The four Republicans removed from the list are Reps. Duncan Hunter (Calif.), Tom Rooney (Fla.), Lynn Jenkins (Kan.) and Leonard Lance (N.J.).The total number eschewing earmarks by the club’s calculations are 40 House Members and seven Senators, with several other freshman Republicans added to the list. Roll Call reported earlier Wednesday that eight House Republicans, including GOP Vice Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Wash.), who heads a GOP earmark reform task force, are seeking a total of nearly $900 million in earmarks this year after forgoing them last year. The club initially said it was removing the Members from its list because they had violated their pledge to abstain from earmarks.After getting complaints from the four Republicans’ offices, the Club for Growth acknowledged that although the Members had signed on to the Citizens Against Government Waste 10-point pledge to reform earmarks, they had not specifically sworn off earmarks entirely and therefore they never should have been on the club’s list. Members can request earmarks that comply with the CAGW anti-pork pledge. “According to CAGW, Lance, Jenkins, and Hunter violated that pledge,— according to the club. “Rooney did not. But none of them swore’ off earmarks so they allege that they shouldn’t have been on the Club’s Sworn Off Earmarks’ list to begin with.—