Since he became Speaker of the House, John Boehner has made many promises – one of which involved giving House Members ample time to read bills before they were passed.
Well, he just abandoned his pledge…
The House of Representatives is getting dangerously close to voting on the passage of a gigantic, trillion-dollar spending package – and the bill hasn’t even been presented yet!
Indeed, the bill makes the Oxford comprehensive dictionary look like a small paperback; yet members of Congress will likely have less than 24 hours to digest the information and make an “informed” decision.
Come crunch time, will members be tempted to bypass reading the bill before voting?
Congress in a Tight Squeeze?
At the time of this writing, the bill was scheduled to be released on Monday or Tuesday; and a vote will be held today. Nobody will have time to read what they’re voting on. Hundreds of Republican Members have repeatedly promised to read bills before they vote. Any voting for this bill will break that promise.
I wish I could tell you exactly how long the bill is, but we don’t know the exact page count. We also don’t know the total dollar amount, or which programs will be cut and added.
But here’s what we do know: Boehner has once again put Congress between a rock and a hard place – pretty much turning its members’ hands to let the bill slide through legislation.
You see, legislation is a messy business in the best of times; and Boehner’s stewardship has made it worse. Conservative budget hawk Rep. Tim Huelskamp of Kansas explained Boehner’s moves this way: “Here we are doing the appropriations bill the last couple days” before a government shutdown, and “that’s not to squeeze Harry Reid. That’s to squeeze us.”
Plain and simple, Boehner is putting the hammer to anyone trying to limit government spending and foster fiscal responsibility. After all, his main objective is to deliver Barack Obama a spending plan to his liking. And he’s made it clear that the Republicans in his caucus need to toe the Obama line.
At least conservatives are seeing Boehner’s actions for exactly what they are…
Rep. Walter Jones of North Carolina told the publication, The Hill, why Boehner is pushing so hard and punishing dissenters that don’t go along: “They don’t want you to read it, that’s why! You think they want you to analyze all the mischievous items in there? I think it’s aimed at screwing over the American people. You can quote me on that.”
The Fine Print Spells “Failure”
Instead of putting strong language in the bill against Obama’s Immigration Executive Action that would guarantee Republican support, Boehner is counting on Democrats to help him pass this massive piece of legislation.
And since it funds all of Barack Obama’s legislative priorities from Obamacare to a Homeland Securities Immigration rewrite, Nancy Pelosi has signaled (like Harry Reid) that she will provide votes to Boehner to get the job done.
Think about it: Why is Boehner doing the work of his political opponent? And, furthermore, why is Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid so excited to help John Boehner violate his previous pledges?
You see, lame-duck sessions of Congress are notorious for being when the Washington power elite get most of their dirty work done. Members who know they’ll be out of a job come January are only too happy to ingratiate themselves with the powers’ structure and vote for bills they otherwise would reject if they had to face the voters again.
It’s a very poor situation; John Boehner should be ashamed. And Republicans supporting this spending plan should face primary opponents in two years.
This commentary originally appeared at WallStreetDaily.com and is reprinted here with permission.
Photo credit: johnboehner.house.gov
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