The Stimulus Vote and the Suspension of Democracy

by Sal on February 13, 2009

in Economy,Politics

First a bit of reality.  The stimulus is going to pass.  Only two scenarios could prevent that.  First, in the House, if 39 Blue-Dog Democrats (there are 49 in the Blue-Dog caucus) bolt and vote with the Republicans.  Not likely to happen.  Second, now that Kennedy cannot vote due to his health, if one of the three RINOs in the Senate get cold feet and do not vote to end debate, it would kill the bill.  Still unlikely, but has a higher possibility than the first option.  So for all intents and purposes, the Stimulus will be passed by Congress today, and signed by the President within the next week or so, and be the law of the land.

The trouble is, no one knows what is in the bill.   The conference report was completed yesterday, and swelled to over 1,000 pages.  The bill was only released “in summary” by Pelosi during the day, and wasn’t released to the members of the House and Senate until after 11 PM last night, although it was released to Democrat lobbyists much earlier in the day.  Now, the House and Senate leadership is planning on ramming this bill through today before anyone has a chance to read what is in it (although some members of the GOP are making a valiant attempt), so Pelosi can go on her junket to Europe.  The Democrats promised 48-hours to review the bill, and they have broken that promise, because that they know that as the details of the bill come out, support will drop.

Regardless of whether or not you are a supply-sider or a believer in debunked Keynesian economics, a Republican or a Democrat, in a Democracy, this is no way to pass legislation.  The promises of transparency, of openness, of the most ethical administration ever, died today.  This Democrat-controlled congress along with the Democrat President are the most partisan, undemocratic hacks to occupy the seats of government in my lifetime.

If there is anything procedurally that can be done (i.e. force the reading of the bill) to delay this monstrosity, it should be done.  The GOP Senators and Representatives who have stood strong are to be commended.  We lost this battle, and no one knows what we are going to end up with because of it (even though we know that it won’t work), because no one has had the time to examine the bill.  Welcome to the new era of government by decree.

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