Saturday, July 23, 2011
I Think Someone Forgot the Rules
Up until the Obama Presidency the federal government seemed to operate by a set of rules established by the Constitution. Now it seems many of these rules have been turned on their heads, so to speak, to accommodate a President that either doesn't care about the rules or just ignores them. Take the current Debt Ceiling and Budget debate; there are rules that govern the raising of the debt ceiling and approval of a budget. The House of Representatives proposes a raise in the debt ceiling or a budget. When passed it is sent to the Senate that accepts or modifies it. When the House and Senate pass the same version of the bill it is sent to the President for his signature and it then becomes law. That is the procedure written in the Constitution. While it has become customary for a President to submit a budget proposal, it is also customary for Congress to originate its own proposal with some consideration of the President's priorities. So for the record, the debt ceiling and budget debate should be between the House and the Senate, not the House and the President. So far the only piece of legislation (Cut, Cap and Balance) has been produced by the House. The Senate hasn't acted and the President has not even offered a proposal in writing. Americans need to insist that the President and the Congress follow the rules.