"Today, we are demanding accountability," said Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md.This from a guy who voted for a whopping
$500 million for emergency wildfires suppression; the Forest Service currently has $831 million for this purpose;Wasn't this emergency bill supposed to be for the funding of our troops' needs in Iraq?
$400 million for rural schools;
$283 million for the Milk Income Loss Contract program;
$120 million to compensate for the effects of Hurricane Katrina on the shrimp and menhaden fishing industries;
$100 million for citrus assistance;
$74 million for peanut storage costs;
$60.4 million for salmon fisheries in the Klamath River region in California and Oregon;
$50 million for asbestos mitigation at the U.S. Capitol Plant;
$48 million in salaries and expenses for the Farm Service Agency;
$35 million for NASA risk mitigation projects in Gulf Coast;
$25 million for spinach growers;
$25 million for livestock;
$20 million for Emergency Conservation Program for farmland damaged by freezing temperatures;
$16 million for security upgrades to House of Representatives office buildings;
$10 million for the International Boundary and Water Commission for the Rio Grande Flood Control System Rehabilitation project;
$6.4 million for House of Representative’s Salaries and Expenses Account for business continuity and disaster recovery expenses;
$5 million for losses suffered by aquaculture businesses including breeding, rearing, or transporting live fish as a result of viral hemorrhagic septicemia;
$4 million for the Office of Women’s Health at the Food and Drug Administration; and
A minimum wage increase, which is the subject of separate legislation.
Yeah, I can see how there might be an emergency requirement that we rush through $16 million for security upgrades to House of Representatives office buildings. After this stunt, they will probably need more protection. They'll have to hire mercenaries for the job, too, since they're obviously not going to get much support from honest working soldiers or their friends and families. So I'll give 'em that.
But how do the bulk of these other items relate to Iraq, again? Account for that, please, Mister Van Hollen.