Ronald Reagan, in his 1988 State of the Union address to Congress, hefted a 1,000-page, 14-pound spending bill and warned lawmakers against sending him more "behemoths" like this. "And if you do, I will not sign it."That was from the 1988 State of the Union address [text, and he was speaking to a Democrat Congress.
Last Saturday, AP reports, Congress passed a spending bill of over 3,000 pages. (Well, 3,646 including accompanying docs.)
Pork. If your Congress critter doesn't grab it, someone else's will. They know this, they repeat this, and most of them grab it. It's one of them "vicious cycles," they say.
The President needs a line-item veto, and he must use it heavily. That ends the cycle. Barring that, he has to have the balls to veto the entire budget until it is cleaned up, which is a bad thing to do politically when your party is Congress. (Clinton's veto of the budget reconciliation in '95 was a slap at a fledgling Republican Congress: he could blame Gingrich.. For the purposes we're discussing, that veto does not count. The President would have to blame… whom? Dennie Hastert?)