Home > Congress, Domestic Issues, Economy > Week in Review – GOP Faceplants and Failures

Week in Review – GOP Faceplants and Failures

Hello and welcome to my first Week in Review, and right out of the gate we’ve got a lot to talk about.

1) I swear by my TV… –  The first act of any Congress is for each member to take an oath to support and defend the Constitution from all enemies domestic and foreign.  It is also important that the oath be administered by the Speaker in the House chamber.  Yet, there were two Representatives, Rep Sessions (R-TX) and Rep Fitzpatrick (R-PA) who missed the ceremony, because the were in the middle of a fund raiser at the Visitors Center.  They were so busy meeting with people and raising campaign money (in the Capital complex no less, which may be looked into as an ethics violation) that they missed the ceremony, yet had a TV ready and raised their hands at it and took the oath via satellite, or closed-circuit, or something.

To start off a Congress with this sort of flagrant disrespect shows to me the true color of the new Republican led House…and that color is green.  Here it is, the first day on the job and instead of taking the solemn oath of office, they’re holding a fundraiser to pay off debts for Fitzpatrick’s run for office.  There was a registration form on his website (it was taken down on Friday, but there are links on the Huffington Post website to the form that was posted) that asked for donations to be made to “Fitzpatrick for Congress”.  There are clear rules that no solicitation is allowed on the Capitol.

Right out of the starting blocks, we’ve got a possible ethics probe.  What could possibly happen next?

2)  Reading is Fundamental – The oaths have been administered (well, almost all of them), and the GOP have officially taken over the House of Representatives.  You want to start in a grand fashion, so you start by reading the Constitution into the official House record…but minus all those messy bits about slaves and the failure of prohibition.  Really now, we don’t want the truth about the mistakes we’ve made in the past to get in the way of a good chest-thumping and flag waving session, right?

Don’t get me wrong.  I do think that this is a good way to start things off.  Both sides have been guilty over the years of bending and breaking the rules, so going over them right up front is great.  However, I can’t give them a lot of credit for this one.

The portion they skipped about slaves being counted as three-fifths of a person was a compromise between the North and the South for tax distribution and House seats – so don’t let the likes of Glenn Beck tell you otherwise.  This compromise was reached during the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention of 1787, so there was a good chance that if this compromise had not been reached, the Constitution may never have been ratified.

They also skipped the amendment concerning prohibition, yet read the amendment that did away with it.  To me, that also feels wrong.  If anything, we need to remember our history as a way not to repeat the mistakes we’ve made.  We can also look at it as we move forward with the drug war of today.  Can we say it has been a success or a failure like prohibition was.

3) Job-killing and deficit busting – OK, we’ve got the swearing in done and the Constitution read, so we’re ready for our first order of business…repealing health care.

The Affordable Health Care Act is not perfect.  There are a lot of things that can be changed and fixed.  There are a lot of good things about it as well.  You can no longer be denied due to “preexisting conditions” like cancer, diabetes, or even pregnancy.  If your children live at home, you can keep them on your policy until the age of twenty-six.  The donut hole for prescription coverage has been closed if your on Medicare.  It has also been reported that because of this Act, more than thirty million Americans who are not covered now, will be able to afford coverage.  There are also tax breaks for small businesses with less than 25 employees and an average salary of less than $50,000 (you know, real small businesses, not the fake ones like Koch Industries that are considered a “small business” because there are only two owners, even though they make millions of dollars a year and have tens of thousands of employees – sounds like a real small business, right?).

On top of that, the Congressional Budget Office has released a report saying that if it is repealed, it will raise the deficit by $230 billion over the next ten years, and a Harvard economist has shown that repeal will also cost at least 250,000 jobs in the Health Care industry alone and possibly up to 400,000 jobs, because with more Americans being able to afford health care, there will be a need for more health care professionals to take care of them.

So, to repeal a so-called “job-killing” health care act that does help people, Republicans want to kill jobs and raise the deficit…sounds like a great way to help the country, right?  As I’ve said before don’t repeal it, fix it.  There is good here, so lets fix what isn’t and make it better.

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What do you think about the week that was.  Do you see this week as the Republican’s first steps to greatness, or their first missteps into failure.

You can post a comment or email me at fapolitics@gmail.com

 

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