Obama Power Grab: White House Wants to Take Over Appropriations Process

Politico reported on the stop-gap funding measures that passed to avert a shut down of the federal government. Of course, there’s nothing unusual about that. What’s unusual is the request sent by the White House.

The action came as the administration sent to the Capitol more than 50 funding adjustments it wants considered as part of what would be a stripped-down appropriations package for the remainder of the 2011 fiscal year ending Sept. 30.

Many agencies would be left frozen at their current spending levels, but the documents indicate the White House is seeking more than $11.4 billion in new spending above 2010, chiefly for foreign aid and defense accounts as well as education initiatives and housing assistance for low-income tenants. The administration also wants to [sic] a remarkably open-ended authority to transfer funds between accounts — a power that is sure to be resisted by the Appropriations Committee leadership.

This is unbelievable. Basically, what they’re asking for is Congress to approve an overall budget, and then the administration can decide how they want to spend the money. The Republicans took control of the House because Americans want some oversight when it comes to how and where our money is spent. If the power of the purse is handed over to the White House there will be absolutely no accountability.

Ed Morrissey pointed out that that Politico “buried the lead” by burying the most important news within the article. I’ll say! The headline “Stopgap spending clears Congress” hardly throws up any red flags. I wonder how many people even bothered to read the entire article.

Morrissey also urges Senate Republicans to filibuster any attempts by the administration to take over the appropriations process. I have to believe they will and I wouldn’t be surprised if a few Democrats join them. A number of those Senators are coming up for re-election in 2012 and I doubt they’ll want to explain to the voters why they handed over control of the budget to the executive branch.