For those who say there isn’t one dime’s worth of difference between the two parties, I say, it sure as hell seems that way most days, but the reality is, there is a serious Party, Republicans and then there are those egregious Democrats who have spent us in 5 years to oblivion. You see, there are bills that Democrats forced upon us, such as Obamacare (almost 3,000 pages), and then there are bills that the new Republican majority in the House, will no longer accept, you know, the kind we couldn’t read and neither could the Congress Never Should There Be A Bill That Is Over 20 Pages Long, Ever!
Political logs roll when lawmakers push through a bill that benefits their constituencies but is financed by all taxpayers — it’s a game of “you vote for my dams and bridges, and I’ll vote for your housing projects and hospitals.”
For Big Green, the archetypal “omnibus public lands bill” has been the ideal vehicle — a game that savvy Democrats play with freshman Republicans to “vote for dozens of my no-oil-or-gas wilderness bills and I’ll vote for two of your ‘name a mountain after some obscure native son’ bills.” Even better for Big Green, an omnibus bill is so long and complicated that key staffers are known to have never read the whole thing.
Such crammed-full-of-other-bills omnibus bills are usually touted as being “not especially controversial,” as a New York Times commentator did two months ago when writing about Democrats on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on National Parks, who decided to review 21 federal lands bills at once.
Perhaps it was true. Bills that created “new wilderness in Michigan’s Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, create a new Pinnacles National Park in California and add dozens of miles of wild and scenic rivers in Oregon” weren’t especially controversial — unless it was your home that got the condemnation and eviction notice from a federal marshal.
But the GOP has caught on. Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., called it an “unfortunate circumstance” that Democrats had stuffed 21 little bills into one big bill in the panel’s opening hearing of this session of Congress.
I more then anyone love to keep the Republican’s feet to the fire and I will continue to do so, however, when an opportunity presents itself to thank them for showing constraint, I will do that as well.