Via the Open Congress Blog below are the top 10 Senate earmark recipients in the 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Bill. In RED next to each I added the Senator's rank in terms of Senate seniority.
1. Sen. Robert Byrd [D, WV] – $122,804,900 First
2. Sen. Richard Shelby [R, AL] – $114,484,250 Nineteenth
3. Sen. Christopher Bond [R, MO] – $85,691,491 Twenty-second
4. Sen. Dianne Feinstein [D, CA] $76,899,425 Twenty-seventh
5. Sen. Thad Cochran [R, MS] – $75,908,475 Eighth
6. Sen. Lisa Murkowski [R, AK] – $74,000,750 Sixtieth
7. Sen. Thomas Harkin [D, IA] – $66,860,000 Fifteenth
8. Sen. James Inhofe [R, OK] – $53,133,500 Thirty-fifth
9. Sen. Mitch McConnell [R, KY] – $51,186,000 Sixteenth
10. Sen. Daniel Inouye [D, HI] – $46,380,205 Third
I actually thought that seniority and earmarks would have been even more highly correlated, but you can see that 6 out of the 10 are within the top 20 in terms of seniority.
6 of the 10 are also Republicans.
How about that Muskowski muscling her way all the way from 60th on the seniority list to secure the 6 spot at the trough! Way to go! (OK, I was trying to be serious, but that was just snarky.)
Anyway. Just some food for thought. Very expensive food (and too little thought).