There Are No Magic Bullets to Kill Stupid Government Spending

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Pete Davis on the line-item veto and its siblings:

Unless you have worked in the right places in Washington, you rarely see how much White House pork moves into bills before Congress. We tend to focus on congressional pork without realizing that presidents will use additional power to rescind as a lever to gain votes or to punish those who don't go along or to reward supporters. A president may generate some modest budgetary savings on balance compared to what Congress wanted to spend, but it wouldn't be worth the price in my opinion.


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Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

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