GOP, Obama Spar Over Earmarks
President wants reform; Boehner and Cantor want 2-year ban
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 13, 2010 7:21 AM CST
House Republican leader John Boehner and House GOP Whip Eric Cantor are calling for a 2-year ban on earmarks.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
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(Newser) – President Obama is urging Congress to crack down on earmarks in his weekly radio address today, even as John Boehner and Eric Cantor saw his crackdown and raised him an outright ban in what Politico calls a race for fiscal purity. Obama said some earmarks "support worthy projects in our local communities," but that reform was needed to signal "our commitment to fiscal responsibility."

Boehner and Cantor preempted Obama's address with a statement saying the president could demonstrate his commitment to "real earmark reform" by "immediately agreeing to veto any spending measure this year or next that includes earmarks.” That doesn't go far enough for some in the GOP; the Senate is set to vote on a permanent ban sponsored by Jim DeMint next week, but it's unlikely to pass.