In his State of the Union address, President Obama called for a public database of earmarks that are often inserted into federal legislation. U.S. Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) is among a group of lawmakers on Capitol Hill who are now working to make that a reality.
Feingold is co-sponsoring legislation that would require information about earmarks to be posted in an online public database before they are voted on. It would include information about who proposed the project, how much it will cost, and what areas will benefit.
The Wisconsin Democrat says earmarks are often slipped into bills at the last minute and can draw a great deal of controversy when they’re discovered after a bill is passed. He says making the public aware of the details early on could help to prevent many of the questionable proposals from even being offered.
Feingold says the database would provide the kind of disclosure the American people deserve and should help to ease fears about corruption.
AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (:57)