Updated: I’ve been sent a passage from the Congressional record illustrating that the specific spending Tom Campbell defended was not an earmark, but rather an NSF grant. So, while it makes sense that John Campbell’s amendment would target such a thing as wasteful spending, this specific amendment that Tom Campbell opposed addressed “peer reviewed” grants, not requests by members of Congress. Different process. John Campbell must have mis-remembered, which is of course understandable, but the record must be corrected for my part in repeating it.
Tom Campbell has now pledged to oppose earmarks. That’s a good position to take, and I agree with it. Earmarks are a tiny part of the spending problem, but they’re a gateway drug to outright corruption. There is too little oversight and too much abuse of that system, and it should be abolished.
However this is a recent change for him. Via Flash Report, John Campbell tells us how Tom Campbell once lobbied him in favor of earmarks:
Are campaign-year conversions a useful indicator? That’s for the primary voters to decide.