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The Guy Who Writes Government Checks Has No Idea How He’s Going to Pay for DOMA

Did John Boehner’s mouth write a check that his ass can’t cash?

The House Speaker arranged to pay anti-gay lawyer Paul Clement half a million taxpayer dollars to defend DOMA. The only problem: nobody has half a million spare dollars lying around.

That’s got Representatives like California’s Mike Honda feeling annoyed. “If the message from the last election is to cut spending, then why is Speaker Boehner forcing Americans to pay a high-priced private law firm $520 per hour to defend a Constitutionally-flawed and discriminatory law?” Honda asked at today’s House Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee hearing.

Honda demanded answers from House General Counsel Kerry Kircher at the hearing, since Kircher signed his name on the contract.But the best Kircher could come up with was an explanation from House Republican leadership that funds would not come out of the his own budget.

Even worse, the the Chief Administrative Officer Dan Strodel, who would ultimately write the checks to Brancroft PLLC on behalf of the House, said that he too had no knowledge of where the money would come from. Whoops!

There ought to be a law that prevents politicians from pledging to spend money without having a funding source in place. And as it turns out, there is: it’s called the Antideficiency Act, and calls for sanctions including administrative discipline and referral to the Justice Department.

Your move, Mr. Boehner!

By:           matt baume
On:           May 12, 2011
Tagged: , , , ,

  • 10 Comments
    • PLAINTOM
      PLAINTOM

      Republicans committed to budget reduction or was that only a campaign strategy to get them political power? Look around the country, at both the federal and also the state level. New Republican Majorities concentrating on budgets or is their focus on passing their ideology and theology into secular law? Maybe I am too cynical but I can’t read their minds, I can only listen to their words and look at their actions.

      May 12, 2011 at 11:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • abcDario
      abcDario

      It is not fair what they are doing with that guy.

      May 13, 2011 at 1:30 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • PRW
      PRW

      @abcDario: @abcDario:

      Repubs can dish it out but they just can’t take it!

      May 13, 2011 at 11:25 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • AxelDC
      AxelDC

      Send the bills to the Mormons. They are eager to spend money attacking gay rights.

      May 13, 2011 at 12:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      Oh, I’m sure the Koch brothers will foot the bill for this one. Failing that, why don’t the the republican members of the house demand that the governors of the 30 states where DOMA is legal pay for it themselves since they’re against government spending on frivolous programs with the exception of defense? Why is it none of them have given up their federally funded health care too or in the case of the senior citizen members of the house, declined their social security checks and donated them to the poor to help the economy? While I’m on my soapbox, where are all the jobs that they claim the corporations created in the past 10 years and paying next to nothing in corporate taxes as a result of tax cuts for the rich?

      May 13, 2011 at 1:14 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • tjr101
      tjr101

      The GOP controlled House of Representatives has yet to pass a single jobs bill. Their campaign for fiscal responsibility has been a big sham just to get their hands on the public purse, enrich their friends, and demonize all segments of the population that won’t vote for them. If they want to defend DOMA, they should take a pay cut and fund it themselves. To the old farts that voted them in last November, they’ll certainly get what they voted for if (god forbid) Paul Ryan’s voucher plan for Medicare gets implemented.

      May 13, 2011 at 1:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      tjr101, the GOP already has a bill, its called further tax cuts for the corporate rich elite who bankroll their party overwhelmingly more than it does the democrats. They’re not going to invest in the economy of this country let alone create jobs while they can make huge profits on the backs of cheap labor overseas. They think that’s pro American by shifting manufacturing jobs away from these shores. Not only have 2 million jobs been lost in the past decade or so, but more than 48,000 manufacturing factories have been shut down as a result of cheap labor in China, India, Malaysia and elsewhere and avoiding revenue for the treasury by paying their fair share of taxes that the rest of us pay. If anything, they’re un-American. Tax the bastards, make them pay just as we do and tax their offshore profits if they reside in this country.

      May 13, 2011 at 1:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the crustybastard
      the crustybastard

      Aren’t there about 30 staff attorneys already on the House payroll?

      Why aren’t they up to the task?

      May 13, 2011 at 10:57 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hyhybt
      Hyhybt

      I’m surprised not to have seen anything about this anywhere else.

      May 18, 2011 at 12:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      I wonder which checkbook he used to pay the two female lobbysists he is alledged to have had sex with, a story that had been conveniently silenced by the right wing media of course.

      May 19, 2011 at 9:04 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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