She may be on a crusade against earmarks, but that hasn't stopped a watchdog group from naming Claire McCaskill one of Washington's worst "porkers" when it comes to spending.
Earmarks were temporarily banned from appropriations bills last year, but that didn’t stop officials from misusing or attempting to misuse the federal spending process, Citizens Against Government Waste contends.
On Monday, the group announced its short list of the six worst “porkers” in 2011. In the absence of earmarks, the list of offenses include a wider range of deeds than traditional pork-barrel spending.
From Congress, the nominees are Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) and House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.).
Energy Secretary Steven Chu and National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis round out the list.
This inclusion of McCaskill, who is in a tough reelection fight, is noteworthy because she has been a top crusader against earmarks. The group put her on the list for advocating that the troubled postal service start a marketing campaign to promote letter writing, an idea the group deems a waste of money.
This has to have McCaskill's campaign hurting today, because her inclusion on this list is inevitably a commercial in the works. It's a relatively damaging blow to her ability to pound away at the earmark and government waste issue on the campaign trail.