In today's issue of The Hill, on the front page, is an article reporting that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) topped her presidential rivals in securing earmarks from the taxpayers. In laudatory terms, the article gropes for an explanation for her success, speculating on the impact of seniority and connections.

The article misses the point, clear to everybody else on earth, that earmarking is not something to be proud of. It is an abuse of legislative power that robs taxpayers of money and diverts it to pet projects, usually closely linked to campaign contributions to the friendly legislator who lined up the money. The article should have speculated on whether Hillary can live down the distinction of being the earmark queen rather than laud her for her effectiveness at ripping off the taxpayers.