Let’s behave as a Congress of the United States, not an aggregation of petulant children!
At the beginning of the current Republican shutdown of the United States government, Dean of the House, Michigan Congressman John Dingell, gave a speech on the floor of the House that took Republicans to task for their irresponsible dereliction of their responsibility to govern, lead, and solve the problems of the people. It’s a biting, no-holds-barred schooling of the most extremist group of lawmakers ever to despoil The People’s House.
One of my colleagues came to me yesterday and he says, “You’ve seen it worse, haven’t you?” Well, I’ve only been here 57 years and I NEVER have! I’ve never seen such small-minded, miserable behavior in this House of Representatives and such a disregard for our responsibilities to the people.
We’re supposed to solve the problems of the people. We’re supposed to deal with the concerns they have. We’re supposed to see to it that the nation prospers. None of that is being done. The American people could get better government out of Monkey Island in the local zoo than we’re giving them today!
I’m embarrassed and I’m humiliated and I certainly hope that my colleagues on both sides, especially on the Republican side, are embarrassed.
This is going to cost us huge amounts of money. It’s going to waste money in the amount which will exceed that which we saw wasted during the last time that the Republicans shut the House down. They shut it down in ’95 and ’96; it cost $2 billion in today’s monies according to the Office of Management and Budget.
This shut down is no different and it’s going to end up not only costing money but hurting the economy and hurting jobs and hurting the American recovery. During the last shutdown, we lost huge amounts of revenue through IRS, through the EPA, and other agencies. Passport applications were not processed. More revenue was lost. National parks, battlefields, and monuments were closed. Now we’re going to pass a bunch of hit-and-miss legislation in the assumption that people are going to think that, in some quaint way, we’re solving the nation’s problems.
We’re called the “Congress”. That means “coming together”! I see no coming together here! I see a waste of time, a waste of money, and the behavior of a bunch of people who look small, petulant, and small-minded. I’m embarrassed. I hope my colleagues are embarrassed. The American people are not only embarrassed but they’re being hurt by the shameless, miserable behavior that we’re demonstrating today in this chamber and on the televisions of the nation.
Let’s get down to business. Let’s pass the continuing resolution. Let’s do our responsibilities. Let’s behave as a Congress of the United States, not an aggregation of petulant children.
These are important words given that House Republicans are still playing games. White House Spokeswoman Amy Brundage described the most recent efforts by the GOP, which continue to include changes to the Affordable Care Act, as more hostage taking:
The President has said repeatedly that Members of Congress don’t get to demand ransom for fulfilling their basic responsibilities to pass a budget and pay the nation’s bills. Unfortunately, the latest proposal from House Republicans does just that in a partisan attempt to appease a small group of Tea Party Republicans who forced the government shutdown in the first place. Democrats and Republicans in the Senate have been working in a bipartisan, good-faith effort to end the manufactured crises that have already harmed American families and business owners. With only a couple days remaining until the United States exhausts its borrowing authority, it’s time for the House to do the same.
Here’s a clear example of the petulance of House Republicans:
House Republican leadership has considered passing the bill, and then leaving Washington, in a bid to try to force the Senate’s hand.
Eclectameme/photo by Anne C. Savage, special to Eclectablog