Congressional Inertia

Congress will finally head back to work with a “honey do” list of national needs.  Despite the many immediate concerns facing Congress there is already talk of a continuing resolution with respect to the budget.  Continuing resolution is political talk for “kicking the can down the road.”  By passing a continuing resolution Congress can authorize government spending through December and delay making any difficult budget decisions.  So one of the top tasks on our honey do list (a government budget) won’t get done.  Our political system has become a joke to most Americans.  They see a Congress that can’t work together and never makes any tough decisions.  Hurricane Harvey will be a convenient excuse for Congress to focus on hurricane recovery funding and ignoring everything else.  Not every member of Congress needs to be working on hurricane recovery funding; other members could be drafting tax reform legislation and others could be concentrating on healthcare reform.  Too many in Congress are perpetually in “fund raising” mode and working toward their next election.  If we could ever get term limits passed legislators could concentrate on the job they were elected to perform.

In recent years Congress has delegated law-making to judges and the president.  I was not a fan of the many Executive Actions taken by President Obama, but when Congress abdicates their responsibilities, someone must pick up the slack.  Congress has gotten to be the Titanic of our government, too large to maneuver.   President Trump has done everything within his power to push his agenda through Congress.  He has faced opposition at every turn, even from his own party.  Money from donors and lobbyists is what motivates our legislators.  People don’t run for office to serve others but to serve their own personal interests.  I’ve heard that big business and lobbyists essentially write bills that are then submitted by their legislators.  I doubt this is what our founding fathers had in mind.  I’m extremely skeptical that the upcoming legislative session will address what Americans want:  tax reform, healthcare legislation and immigration reform.  The President has his hands full dealing with the numerous threats to our national security.  As a native Missourian I say to Congress, “Show Me!”

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