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Florida earmarks -- Wasserman Schultz, Castor -- draw scrutiny

 A military project backed by Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz was one of more than 550 earmarks targeted this week by a longtime critic who took aim at lawmakers' funding requests for private companies.

The Broward Democrat secured $4.5 million for General Dynamics for a high-tech military radio system that has drawn criticism from government investigators for cost overruns. Wasserman Schultz, who has received $9,000 in campaign contributions from the company's employees' political action committee, defended the request, with a spokesman noting that the Virginia-based company has created jobs in South Florida.

And theWashington Post reports that "members of the House ethics committee, who are investigating a pattern of lawmakers steering federal funds to generous defense contractors, have just had their own pet military projects approved by the same committee whose activities they are probing."

Among them: Rep. Kathy Castor, whose $3.25 million in earmarks appeared near the bottom of a chart of committee members.