Friday, August 3, 2012

Friday Funday: Run For The Hills

In many places around the country, when the month of August begins, the thought of running as fast as possible for the nearest batch of cooler temperatures blasts to the top of the collective wishlist.

In other words, a vacation.

In our minds, however, a vacation is something that should be well-earned after a long period of hard work.

That's an opinion that since January 2011, has been almost completely missing in the Republican-led House of Representatives. In fact, right now there is a tsunami of major issues that still faces Congress: the Farm Bill, a drought aid bill, the upcoming budget crisis (a crisis Congress created themselves) with biting sequester penalties, the extension of the Bush Tax Cuts, the Postal Service crisis (that Congress created), and more. Most of these bills deal with taxes and budgets, and so their resolution MUST begin in the House - meaning that the House more than the Senate controls the Congressional calendar.

Yet, the far-right wing Republican "leaders" did what they've done nearly every time they've been faced with a tough decision since they got back into power.

They left Washington, D.C. on vacation for five weeks - but voted against leaving on vacation before they beat feet for home.

That may confuse a whole lot of people.

Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution says "Neither House, during the Session of Congress, shall, without the Consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days...." So if the full Congress wants a real vacation, simple majorities in each house must vote for a vacation.

For once, however, old-fashioned, non-Tea Party Republicans - the kind who used to care more about working for their constituents than appearing on Fox or Rush Limbaugh - decided to join with Democrats, and stand up for what's right. So the House voted 150-265 to not adjoin for a technical recess.

That wasn't the only bipartisanship seen in the increasingly partisan U.S. House this week.

A bi-partisan coalition led by Iowa Democratic Congressman Bruce Braley tried all week to convince their fellow lawmakers to pass a decent Farm Bill before the August recess. Even though their initial efforts failed, the bipartisan group is going to continue to use the arcane rules of the House to try and force through an upgraded Farm Bill, even in the middle of a month of "Pro Forma" sessions.

That's right; a group of bipartisan Congresspersons are going to keep working through the break, to try and get done what their cowardly leaders don't have the guts to do: the jobs the American people sent them to Washington to do.

If that's not a reason to celebrate, we don't know what is.

Good luck to those lawmakers who left DC for a vacation.
We'll remember you in November.

No comments:

Post a Comment