Wednesday, March 29, 2006

I'm Only A Bill- Except When I'm Not

Click on the link for a blast from the past. Jack Sheldon sings a clip from "I'm just a bill," the story of how bills used to be passed in Congress.

Now Carrie has a link to story about how bills are passed in 2006. What do you do when the House and Senate pass different versions of the same bill? It used to be that you had to have an open debate on the two versions and then reconcile them before voting again. Now, apparently, you just say that it doesn't matter.

The Washington Post reports that the White House doesn't believe that a $2 billion difference in the omnibus budget bill is significant enough to force them to follow the procedure for making laws in the US and has signed it anyway. Now a lawsuit has been filed to revoke the budget package.

It would have been awfully embarrassing for Republican leaders to have to vote on this slash and burn bill one more time. The Senate version only passed the first time because VP Dick Cheney cut short an overseas trip to come back and break the tie. Now, given two months of horrifies reaction from constituents over the cuts in the package, no one was anxious to have to go on record again to cut student loans, food stamps and Medicare.

Mark Green toed the party line the first time. If he's forced to vote again will he waffle? We'll have to see.

I'm just a bill
Yes I'm only a bill,
And I got as far as Capitol Hill.
Well, now I'm stuck in committee
And I'll sit here and wait
While a few key Congressmen discussand debate
Whether they should let me be a law.
How I hope and pray that they will,
But today I am still just a bill.

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