Update: Sen. Jim DeMint's (R-SC) spokesman accuses Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-SC) of being a johnny-come-lately to securing funds for the Port of Charleston. He says "era of earmarks is over" and earmarks are backlogged at Army Corps of Engineers, exacerbating the problem with the port funding. Instead of trying to directing the Army Corp to fund the study, he wants to create a commission to ensure projects are funded on their merits. More developments, including DeMint spokesman's full statement.
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Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), or Senator Tea Party as he's sometimes known, has found himself between a bit of a rock and a hard place over spending for a job-dependent project in his district and his role as the leading anti-earmark crusader in the upper chamber.
Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-SC), a prominent House Democrat, on Thursday issued a scathing indictment of DeMint, his GOP South Carolina colleague, for effectively killing jobs in the state by refusing to back money for a study on deepening the Port of Charleston.
But others, including Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who is threatening to "tie the Senate in knots" over the funds, have said DeMint supports federal funds for the port and is privately helping to secure them.