Obama's 2006 Earmarks
Update: The AP says Obama has not responded to repeated requests to release his earmark legislation for six of his eightyears in the Illinois Senate. Yet, he's criticizing Hillary on this score:
While silent about Obama's spending in Illinois, his campaign has criticized Democratic presidential rival Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton for withholding similar information about her years in the U.S. Senate.
Obama communications director Robert Gibbs said Thursday that her position should prompt voters to "ask why she doesn't believe they have the right to know she wants to spend their tax dollars."
Among them, an $8 million request for the "High Explosive Air Burst Technology Program." Ultimately, $1.3 million in funding was awarded for the program. [More...]
the defense project was overseen by General Dynamics, one of the nation's largest military contractors. Obama's Illinois finance chairman, James S. Crown, serves on the company's board of directors and his family holds a sizable stake in the company.
Crown and his wife, Paula Crown, are members of Obama's National Finance Committee and have raised more than $200,000 for the Obama campaign, according to a list of fundraisers posted on Obama's campaign website.
Obama had released his 2007 list earlier, but held back on the 2006 list until today.
The request reads (from his website):
Obama Requested $8 Million And Helped Secure $1.3 Million For The High Explosive Air Burst Technology Program. In 2006, Obama requested $8 million and helped secure $1.3 million for High Explosive Air Burst Technology funding. Through General Dynamics, this project supported the 25mm Bushmaster cannon, the primary weapon on the Army Bradley Fighting Vehicle (BFV) and the US Marines’ Light Armor Vehicle (LAV). Under contract for System Design and Demonstration (SDD), GD-OTS is developing a Family of Ammunition for the Army’s Future Combat System (FCS) to include a High Explosive Air Burst (HEAB) round. This program will upgrade the capability of the current forces BFV and LAV. Additional funding for the 25mm HEAB for the SFV and LAV will ensure this program will run effectively during its planned service until 2051. [House Report 109-676 (109th Congress); Obama Request Letter To The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, 2006]
General Dynamics in 2006 was the largest military contractor in the world.
Mr. Crown, whose family's investments include a major stake in the military contractor General Dynamics, said family members normally avoided taking sides in a primary, in part because it was not good for business. But with Mr. Obama, they made an exception, with 10 family members giving a total of $112,500. "I was just so personally impressed with Barack that it was worth the risk," Mr. Crown said.
More on the Crown holdings:
Founded in 1919 as a family-owned building material business, The Henry Crown Companies grew to become one of the nation's largest privately held business organizations and a major force in land development throughout the U.S. The organization's diverse interests range from large-scale office buildings such as Rockefeller Center in New York City, to Aspen Ski Company and the Ojai Resort in Ojai California. Additionally, the Crown family holds significant stock positions and board memberships in General Dynamics, JP Morgan Chase, Sara Lee, and Hilton Hotels, as well as investment holdings in the New York Yankees and Chicago Bulls.
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