President Bush, still voicing concern about special-project spending by Congress, yesterday signed a $555 billion bill that funds the Iraq war well into 2008 and keeps government agencies running through September.
Mr. Bush signed the massive spending bill as he flew on Air Force One to his Texas ranch to see in the new year. His signature on the legislation caps a long-running fight with the Democrat-led Congress.
"I am disappointed in the way the Congress compiled this legislation, including abandoning the goal I set early this year to reduce the number and cost of earmarks by half," he said. "Instead, the Congress dropped into the bill nearly 9,800 earmarks that total more than $10 billion. These projects are not funded through a merit-based process and provide a vehicle for wasteful government spending."
"There is still more to be done to rein in government spending," he said. "In February, I will submit my budget proposal for fiscal year 2009, which will once again restrain spending, keep taxes low, and continue us on a path towards a balanced budget. I look forward to working with the Congress in the coming year to ensure taxpayer dollars are spent wisely."
A Bush spokesman, Scott Stanzel, told reporters en route to Texas earlier that the president remained concerned about "Congress' addiction to earmarks."...
Here's the rest of this Washington Times story.