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Pork barrel

Pork barrel is a derogatory term used to describe government spending that is intended to enrich constituents of a politician. Typically it is funding for special projects that benefit only a small number of people.

The Bonus Bill of 1817 was introduced by John Calhoun to provide highways linking The East and South to The West using the earnings Bonus from the Second Bank of the United States. Calhoun argued for it using general welfare and post roads clauses. It was an early example of pork barrel politics. Though he approved of the goals, President James Madison vetoed the bill as unconstitutional.



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