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National Journal reported that some Republicans are campaigning in favor of pork in Mississippi. Sen. Richard J. Durbin, Illinois Democrat and Mr. Reid’s deputy, has lobbied the Obama administration to reverse its opposition.

President Obama helped end earmarks in his first term, piggybacking on House Republicans’ moratorium by saying he would veto any bill that included pork projects.

Mr. Reid responded by saying, “I disagree, underline, underscore, big exclamation marks, with Obama on earmarks. He’s wrong.”

Earmark supporters said it could be difficult to get a transportation bill passed without earmarks. In the past, congressional leaders offered lawmakers pots of money for projects in their home states in exchange for votes on broad bills.

Thomas A. Schatz, president of Citizens Against Government Waste, said using pork for deal-making led to bad lawmaking.

“These bills end up being more expensive because members will get a few million in earmarks and then vote for hundreds of billions in spending, in exchange for millions in pork,” he said.

Citizens Against Government Waste, which has fought earmarks for years, will release Wednesday the 2014 installment of its “Pig Book,” which details pork-barrel spending.

The organization’s definition of pork is different from what Congress uses, so it still finds examples. Mr. Schatz did say the earmark ban has cut the number and dollar amounts of earmarks, saving taxpayers money.

Mr. Reid said he would be prepared to enhance transparency and disclosure but he believes members of Congress make better spending decisions than the executive branch.

“It is wrong to have bureaucrats downtown make decisions in Nevada that I can make better than they can make,” he said. “I don’t run away at all. This is something that’s been going on for centuries in our country. And it has worked quite well.”

Mr. Schatz countered that even when earmarking was at its height, it accounted for a little more than 1 percent of the federal budget, which means the administration is still making about 99 percent of all spending decisions.