Weather or not we want them, they’ll be baaack
Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy has put out the following Important Schedule Announcement, making us think there’s at least a small upside to the blizzards affecting Washington, D.C.
“Members are advised that due to the severity of the winter storm in the D.C. area, and its adverse impact on travel, we no longer expect votes in the House on Tuesday, January 26 and Wednesday, January 27.
Next votes in the House are scheduled at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, February 1. This is a change from the previously announced calendar.
Members are further advised that we expect to postpone consideration of two items originally planned for this week – H.R. 3662, Iran Terror Finance Transparency Act and the Veto Message on H.R. 3762, Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Act. These two items will now be considered the week of February 1st.”
American confidence in Congress has been in steady free fall mode for several years. According to this 2010 Gallup Poll, Congress came in lower than organized labor, newspapers and television news, HMOs and banks. By June 2014, the news was even more dismal, with Gallup reporting “historic lows,” as only 7 percent of Americans said they have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in Congress.
In July, 2015, Rasmussen Reports found most voters believe their own representatives have sold their vote and think congressional elections are rigged to benefit the incumbent. Just 14% think members of Congress almost always get reelected because they do a good job representing their constituents. Sixty-five percent (65%) think it’s because the election rules are rigged to benefit incumbents.
It wasn’t much better when Rasmussen Reports conducted another survey in Dec. 2015. Only nine percent (9%) of all voters think the average member of Congress listens to the voters he or she represents. Seventy-seven percent (77%) think the average member listens mostly to party leaders in Congress. It seems that pesky term “representative” is open to question.
The severe weather conditions have made life miserable for Americans across large swathes of the U.S. We are not making light of the dire circumstances many in the affected areas face. It is, however, worth noting that less damage is done when congressional members are furloughed.