House Continues To Play Games

The House of Representatives will be in session tomorrow to waste yet more time examining ways to pay certain classes of government workers which the House itself has already furloughed. What the House needs to do is to stop this madness and just pass a budget — even as a continuing resolution — and then get on to the business of raising the current limit on the National Debt.

Republicans in the House are trying to put together a few smaller measures that could go with the annual budget measures and the Debt Ceiling increase. These added measures would need significant Democratic support in the House since significant Tea Party defections would likely continue since many will not support the milder directions taking a different direction away from defunding the Affordable Care Act. Rewriting the tax code and any serious attempt to deal with entitlement reform should obviously be off the table. There is no time to deal with either issue in the context of establishing the necessary budget measure and increase in the National Debt limit. Democrats have rightly rejected these broader issues for the immediate days ahead. There simply isn’t enough time to deal with them and keep the country functioning. Indeed, we have only days left before the markets likely will react quite negatively. Then, anything can happen.

The talk shows this weekend may not be helpful and by Monday the Congress may feel the need for even quicker action, particularly as incendiary language from both the right and the left may have everyone in a foul mood — not that this isn’t already in evidence. Indeed, by Monday the House may increasingly feel the need for action. At the same time one needs to remember that so far this has been the least active Comgress in the history of the republic.


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