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The Pledge – Part 4

September 27, 2010

“A Plan to Reform Congress and Restore Trust”

A suggestion to congress

Part four of the GOP’s Pledge to America deals with many of the tricks Pelosi and Reid have been pulling on the American people for the last couple of years.  Here we go:

“Read the bill”.  Seriously?  This is an indictment on every legislator we have if our elected representatives actually have to say in there pledge that congress should read the stuff they vote on.  I am not knocking the GOP’s point here, I know the representatives don’t read this stuff, but how freaking sad is our system nowadays?  Anyway, they would post every bill on line for at least three days before it is voted on.  A point of contention here.

It is a congressman’s job to do this stuff, they get paid well and have insane incentives to do this job, and I can guarantee none of them would be able to read a 2000 page bill and digest all that it entails in three days, so how are working Americans supposed to be able to?  I truly think they need to extend this to at least seven days.

“Adhere to the Constitution”.  Hmm, see point one — seriously?  Again, I am only railing at the fact that our system is so screwed up that Adhering to the Constitution is actually a talking point.  This point requires all legislation to have a section citing what constitutional authority it has to be legal.  Many people smarter than me have suggested any law can be cited by just using the Commerce clause and General Welfare clause, so I guess this requirement is kind of worthless.  Maybe they are just throwing a bone to us people who still believe in the Constitution.

“Make it easier to cut spending”.  Ok, I like that bullet point, but lets go a step further and add in, “and make it harder to increase spending.”  The goal here is to allow whomever to add amendments to bills in congress, the point being the current criminals running the house only allow Democrat amendments.  The final line is a tad confusing to me, “so we will let any lawmaker — Democrat or Republican — offer amendments to reduce spending.”  Are they saying only “amendments that reduce spending” or that amendments in general “reduce spending”.  If it is the former, who decides if it reduces spending?  And if you disallow an amendment because it doesn’t reduce spending, isn’t that opening the door for criticism from the left that you are blocking the process and not honoring the pledge(here’s a wild one, dems lie about how legislation can reduce spending)?  Just saying.  If it is the latter, see the next point.

“Advance Legislative Issues One at a Time”.  This is good stuff if a little short on how to actually implement it considering they just said they will allow amendments from anyone on bills(I know they vote on amendments separately).  Basically this part stops the congress from tacking on “Don’t ask, don’t tell” legislation on a defense spending bill.  This practice is generally political in nature, because then you can say, “but the republicans voted against the ‘Don’t Kill Children’ Act” when what the repubs were really voting against was the “Build Obama a Monument Act” tacked on at the end.  I am all for it, just again, uncertain how they plan on enforcing it.

So that’s part 4.  Not too bad.  The only part I see having any long term effect is the read the bill portion, which I wish they would extend the time to at least a week, but its a start.

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