Should we trust those who can’t read to lead?

US Health OverhaulWho would buy a car without reading the sales contract?  Who would sign a business parnership without reading the contract and discussing the details with an attorney?  Simple, anyone in our federal government, from Representatives to Senators to the President.  So far this year the House and Senate have voted before ever read a word of the bills they so passionately supported or opposed.  Pelosi and Reid seem proud of this fact.  The Cap and Trade Bill our incompetent House recently passed was 1,500 pages long and had 300 pages of additions and alterations emailed to Representatives hours before being required to vote on the bill.

pelosi-fistWhy would they do this?  Simple, the leadership does not want the bills read for fear of informed opposition.  How can you argue against something you never read?  Apparently it’s easy to argue for things you’ve never read.  You just make it up.  President Obama did just this when he argued what the Health Bill did and did not do in his Wisconsin townhall rally.  The bill had not even been written yet he was telling us what it would and would not do.  Even during his ABC television infomercial he had not read the legislation and was speaking based on what he’d been told.

Currently there is a Bill destined to die in a hostile and apparently illiterate House of Representatives, entitled Read the Bills Act.  The Act would require:

  • Each bill, and every amendment, must be read in its entirety before a quorum in both the House and Senate.
  • Every member of the House and Senate must sign a sworn affidavit, under penalty of perjury, that he or she has attentively either personally read, or heard read, the complete bill to be voted on.
  • Every old law coming up for renewal under the sunset provisions must also be read according to the same rules that apply to new bills.
  • Every bill to be voted on must be published on the Internet at least 7 days before a vote, and Congress must give public notice of the date when a vote will be held on that bill.
  • Passage of a bill that does not abide by these provisions will render the measure null and void, and establish grounds for the law to be challenged in court.
  • Congress cannot waive these requirements.

CNS recently asked House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) about this legislation and he laughed at it.  He considers reading legislation impractical and unnecessary.  He told CNS, “If every member pledged to not vote for it if they hadn’t read it in its entirety, I think we would have very few votes.”  I cannot think of a better proposition.  This would slow down a Congress clearly out of control.  Overall lawmakers think the idea of reading legislation before voting comical.  It’s not just Rep. Hoyer, some Democrats in the House mockingly hired a speed reader to read aloud another bill.  They think something as sensible and logical as knowing what you are voting on is a joke.

Unfortunately, common sense legislation rarely, if ever, succeeds.  Our government appears to be irrevocably dysfunctional.   With idiots controlling both the House and the Senate there is little hope for our Democracy.  The government is controlled by a faceless few who write extremely lengthy legislation to discourage careful consideration.  Then votes are garnered based on catchy phrases, political arm twisting, and partisan loyalties.

Listen, if you are too busy to read a bill then perhaps you should not be an elected representative since clearly you are not doing the job you were elected to do.  If you are not given enough time to read a bill you should be smart enough to smell a rat.  This is not the way to maintain our democracy.  Conspiracy nuts, as I often think of them, have long contended that there was a shadow government running the country.  Whether this proves them correct or not I do not know, but I do know this has been going on for years but seems intensified by conspiring leaders like Pelosi and Reid.  If a conspiracy ever existed now it is more possible than ever.  It is absolutely unconscionable that anyone would vote on a bill that they have not read.  It is even more so that the leadership would not allow ample time for reading and careful consideration and actually demand uninformed voting.

I would encourage anyone reading this blog to call their elected officials and demand they read and vote for the Read the Bills Act.  This is common-sense legislation.  Normally I would argue you don’t need a law to tell you to do something that by nature seems a “no-brainer,” but we have cultivated a government of brainless morons.  The majority of Congress can now honestly claim the title “American Idiot.”

    • jcscuba
    • July 18th, 2009

    Great posting and site. You are on the money with this. I actually took the time to see if there were a requirement to be able to read to be an elected representative. I live in CA. We continually vote down all tax increase legislation, yet we vote the same socialists in each election, Boxer, Pelosi, Feinstein, and Waters. Go figure, J.C.

  1. Thank you. I love to get feedback both positive and negative.

    Isn’t it amazing that they can be so opinionated and cast their votes without reading a word or at best only someone else’s opinion on the bill. BUT how many liberals have you talked to who will make outlandish accusations against conservatives and when pressed for evidence they begin to attack you or your source rather than answer. That is what I refer to as an American Idiot.

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