So what did Reid do in the last hours of this Congress? Betcha. As Bloomberg News reports:
Reid slipped two home state projects into the last major bill Congress passed last week: a transfer of federal land in Nevada to state and private control that's almost two-thirds the size of Rhode Island; and a $4 million grant for a hospice. Neither had been approved by any congressional committee. ...
"Doing anything last minute shoved into an irrelevant measure -- that's exactly what Harry Reid said he was going to stop," said Steve Ellis, vice president of programs at Taxpayers for Common Sense, a Washington-based nonprofit that monitors government spending. "It goes against the grain of transparency and openness."
Reid spokesman Jim Manley said Reid's actions didn't constitute "dead-of-night" legislating because his request was the subject of extensive negotiations earlier in the week among congressional leaders over what to include in the measure.
Reid called House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas on Dec. 7 to remind him of an earlier agreement to include the land legislation when a draft released that day didn't include it, Manley said. The House Rules Committee added Reid's measure at about 10:30 p.m. at Thomas's request. Thomas, who is retiring, is a California Republican.