Don’t worry. This is not a civics lesson about the powers of Congress. There is no point to that because our government is too far gone to resemble the Washington we learned about in school. As far as our Congress is concerned, the only measuring stick that matters is how many times and how hard lawmakers have dropped the ball.
Do you think that the American political system isn’t working because Congress is broken, our parties reduced to hopelessly butting heads with no progress in sight? You are wrong. A do-nothing legislature may not be quite what our government’s creators intended, but the American political system works.
That Congress’s newest rotten deal will be regarded as a bipartisan budget victory if it passes the Senate tells you everything you need to know about bad government in 2013. Our senators and representatives are preparing to head home with heads held high when they should be apologizing to the American people for a year of failed bills and bad deals.
If you are a politician you should know that popular sovereignty means the people tell you what to do. You can stop telling us what the people want. It’s all too often a lie anyway, like the assurances from Democrats that the Affordable Care Act was something the American people had to have:
Second, the American public wants it.
I live in Illinois. Illinois is a conservative’s nightmare. If you are trapped in the Land of Lincoln you can give up on anything worthwhile happening in the political arena. Better to hope for a miracle to minimize the damage from Springfield lawmakers’ decisions or, in the case of public pension reform, the refusal to make a decision.
The only thing that scares Democrats worse than the Tea Party and Republicans more than Barack Obama seeking a third term is fixing America’s debt. If you are a liberal Democrat in Congress you expect Washington to spend and spend often.