The 2020 Congressional Pig Book is here!

Earlier today in an exclusive online press conference, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) released the 2020 Congressional Pig Book, which exposed 274 earmarks costing taxpayers $15.9 billion in the appropriations bills that fund the federal government for fiscal year (FY) 2020. These earmarks waste vital taxpayer dollars to fund parochial and non-essential pet projects.

While the number of earmarks decreased by 2.3 percent over the 282 earmarks in FY 2019, the total cost increased by 3.9 percent of the $15.3 billion in FY 2019. More troublingly, the year’s $15.9 billion is only 3.6 percent less than the $16.5 billion spent in FY 2010, the last year before the earmark moratorium. Since the first Pig Book was issued in 1991, CAGW has uncovered 111,417 earmarks costing taxpayers $375.7 billion.

The release of the Pig Book on Tax Day, as well as two days after the announcement that the monthly budget deficit reached an all-time high of $864 billion in June, makes it clear that the time is ripe to eliminate earmarks permanently.

Among the egregious examples of pork-barrel waste highlighted in the 2020 Pig Book are $2.1 billion for 22 additional, unrequested F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft, a program plagued with cost overruns and delays; $25.8 million for wild horse and burro management, the most ever earmarked; and $16 million for Save America’s Treasures grants, which over the years has funded hundreds of local museums and theaters.

CAGW was joined at the press conference by Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Reps. Ted Budd (R-N.C.), Tim Burchett (R-Tenn.), Bill Flores (R-Texas), Debbie Lesko (R-Ariz.), Tom McClintock (R-Calif.), and Ralph Norman (R-S.C.). Pre-recorded messages were also shared from Sens. (R-Ind.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Mike Lee (R-Utah), and Rand Paul (R-Ky.), and Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.).

CAGW President Tom Schatz’s op-ed on the 2020 Pig Book appeared on FOX Business this morning.

The Summary

The Congressional Pig Book is CAGW’s annual compilation of the pork-barrel projects in the federal budget. A “pork” project is a line-item in an appropriations bill that designates tax dollars for a specific purpose in circumvention of established budgetary procedures. To qualify as pork, a project must meet one of seven criteria that were developed in 1991 by CAGW and the Congressional Porkbusters Coalition.

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