Legislative Dysfunction- the Partially-Participatory U. S. Congress
In both houses of Congress, the respective representatives and senators are only partially participating in the people’s business- presumably the reason they were sent there in the first place.
For starters, the Democrat caucuses in both houses are fixated on two things and two things, only.
First, there’s last year’s election. Unable to come to grips with the fact that Donald Trump was able to wrest the presidency away from the presumptive princess of pre-ordained presidency, Hillary Clinton, and desperate in their need to find something that might explain their election night nightmare, the Democrats are desperate to find any linkage between Trump and Russia. So far, the only real linkage between the two seems to be the fact that both are able to spell each other’s name, and that’s about it. Never mind, though. Bob Mueller is still trying to find something, and who knows? Even a blind squirrel arrives upon an acorn every once in a while…
Second, there’s impeachment. If Russia turns out to be nothing, as apparently and evermore evidently seems to be the case, there’s only one way to undo the results of last fall’s election- impeach the s.o.b. who did this to their Hillary. Therein lies the problem, though- as much as they would love to impeach Donald Trump, finding the requisite high crime and/or misdemeanor could prove to be an unrealistic stretch. The best thing they have so far (firing James Comey, the singing and slithering snake who serves to destroy the president) won’t take them to the promised land they seek. If they can manage however to block any legislative undertaking, by either automatic “no” voting or by outright refusal to participate in any way, they can prevent the Republicans from accomplishing anything legislatively. That would be the only thing that might sweep them back into a majority in both houses, and make the impeachment of Trump all that much easier in the end- even if the real reason for doing so is nothing more than the fact that they really just don’t like the guy.
If that is not bad enough it is the Republicans who seem to be, wittingly or unwittingly, aiding and abetting the Democrats in their devilish designs to upend the election.
For the moderate mainstream milquetoast Republicans- the ones who just want to leave things as they are- they, too, are apoplectic about last year’s election. Their boy, Jeb Bush, got knocked out pretty easily by a political rookie who was just too perky for their staid and steady status quo. Then, if that wasn’t bad enough, the guy had to go ahead and beat Hillary Clinton- the same Hillary Clinton they pretend to hate, but are all-too-willing to work hand-in-hand with a fellow globalist. After all, Hillary wants the same one-world government they do, and it is pretty clear that Donald Trump doesn’t- the guy even goes around saying he wants to put America first, for cryin’ out loud! So, what do they do? Well-practiced in professional procrastination, they drag their feet in pursuit of process, even if that means adhering to arcane rules designed by Democrats to serve their own purposes, i.e. the (Robert) Byrd rule requiring a sixty-vote threshold on all matters budgetary. If anything would prevent balancing the budget or exercising fiscal restraint, it is that rule- but we digress.
Then, there are the Republicans who just hate Donald Trump. Led by his arch-nemesis, John McCain (R-AZ), the so-called “maverick” who would suck up to Barack Obama and either of the Clintons as surely as he would do everything he can to assail the current president. McCain, who insists upon staying wed to process and procedure even if nothing actually gets accomplished, pleads to the return to “regular order,” the fortress of filibuster for legislative failure. His acolytes, like fellow Arizonan Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Susan Collins (R-ME) and several others- you know, the ones who voted against ObamaCare and now refuse to repeal, replace or even repair the failed and designed-to-fail Affordable Care Act. They are the same batch of Republican rattlesnakes who once were oh-so-opposed to ObamaCare’s individual mandates, but now who insist that those same individual mandates remain in place for any chance of enacting tax cut legislation. Amazingly, the failure to pass this legislation will ensure that the Republicans return to minority status in both houses of Congress, and perhaps this is what they want deep down inside. Either that, or they are just plain stupid and, as we all know, you just can’t fix stupid.
While these same Republicans so vehemently opposed to Judge Roy Moore’s election to the Senate, based upon recent allegations of 38-year old sexual improprieties on the part of a man who previously won six state-wide elections, they are just as happy with keeping Senator Al Franken (D-MN) and Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) in their seats, despite far more recent, and for that matter, more credible claims of sexual impropriety. After all, Franken and Menendez are their pals, and Roy Moore is just another nationalist who won’t play along with their idea of what government should be.
Adding together the united-in-opposition-to-Trump Democrats, the anti-Trump, NeverTrump globalists and the let’s-just-keep-the-way-things-are and not-rock-the-boat slackers in the Republican caucuses of both houses, it will be stunning if President Donald Trump ever signs any meaningful legislation into law.
Than again, stunning seems to be the forte of one Donald Trump.
-Drew Nickell, 29 November 2017
© 2017 by Drew Nickell, all rights reserved.
author of “Bending Your Ear- a Collection of Essays on the Issues of Our Times”
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