When it comes to earmarks—lawmakers championing and spending on their favorite projects—Congress has gone on a diet. It’s not the “Biggest Loser” type of drop, but earmarks have declined 10.2 percent from the 2009 fiscal year.
That number comes from the 2010 Congressional Pig Book, published Wednesday by the watchdog group the Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW), which has tracked pork-barrel spending and singled out the most skilled legislators and egregious projects, including candidates for the “Oinker” award, in that arena for two decades.
This year, CAGW has named Senator Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) the "king of pork." According to the Pig Book, Cochran is responsible for 240 earmarks costing $490 million.