Looks like this one has got the conservatives up in arms. Seems the Republicans are not looking very serious about their pledge to end earmarks with this appointment.
High-profile conservatives are questioning the decision by House Republicans to place Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), a veteran lawmaker with a history of earmarking, in charge of a key spending committee.
Richard Viguerie, a longtime conservative activist, said Rogers's election as the next Appropriations Committee chairman (along with Michigan GOP Rep. Fred Upton's selection as chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee) "should cause all conservatives and Tea Partiers to doubt how serious the Republican leadership is about cleaning up the culture of waste, seniority and corruption in Congress.""Grassroots conservatives are unhappy with the status quo in Washington, and Speaker-designate Boehner needs to balance this slap in the face with something to show conservatives that he is truly committed to reversing the size of government," Viguerie wrote in a blog post Thursday.
U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers — known for his ability to secure funding for projects in his Eastern Kentucky district — was selected Tuesday as the new chairman of House Appropriations, the most powerful committee in Congress.
The 5th District Republican was chosen by the GOP steering committee in a secret vote late Tuesday afternoon. The decision is expected to be ratified Wednesday by the rest of the House Republicans. [...]
In the lead-up to the selection, some conservatives argued that neither Rogers nor Lewis was qualified to be the chairman because of their past history as vigorous users of earmarks, special requests for spending on state and local projects.
Critics dubbed Rogers “the Prince of Pork” and called his earmark-benefitted district, where everything from highway construction to homeland security contracts had the Kentuckian's help over the years, “Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood.”
Rogers secured 137 earmarks worth $251.9 million between 2008 and 2010, according to LegisStorm, a nonpartisan congressional watchdog group. That ranked him 99th among Senate and House members with earmarks.
Transcript below the fold.