Last week, CNN published a list of billions of dollars in stimulus provisions that the “Republicans’ congressional leadership” had deemed “wasteful.” The list was actually drawn up by the office of Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), the Senate’s most dedicated foe of pork and earmarks.
“We passed our list onto the leadership, and they passed it on to CNN,” said Coburn spokesman John Hart. “That’s fine by us. There’s a real hunger for information out there.”
Coburn is a friend of the president, with whom he sponsored the 2006 transparency bill that launched the spending-tracking site USAspending.gov. But in previous Congresses, he’d been something of a pariah among Republicans. That’s clearly changed as the GOP confronts the new Democratic president.