Rather than doing a dance to celebrate the end of the attempted government coup by the “Tea (extortion) Party,” and the fact that their anti-democracy stunts have done nothing to reach their goals, I want to propose a few solutions to prevent this from ever happening again and to make Congress a bit more functional.
“We the people…” should demand the legislative branch pass the following laws/constitutional amendments*:
- When the legislative branch of government can not fashion and approve a budget the president will sign on time, they don’t get any form of remuneration at all: no salary, no health insurance, no access to their “essential services” congressional gym, no free parking at airports (did you know they get that?), and their retirement plan delayed 1 year for every day they fail to fulfill their budgetary duties. These elected officials are expected to pass a budget, not play games with continuing resolutions. The state of California constantly faced an inability to pass a budget to the governor until this state did a very similar thing. Now, miraculously, they figure it out somehow!
- All passed budgets automatically carry an increase in the deficit if the budget increases it. (I have real issues with the budget deficit, but these should be solved in a responsible legislative process.)
- Citizen’s United must be overturned by legislative act.
- Campaign contributions need to be limited significantly. I would recommend fashioning what Lawrence Lessig has been proposing for years. Elections must be funded by citizens only, not corporations. The Koch brothers and all others must not be allowed to fund political movements/parties.
- Legislators, like Ted Cruz, who attempt to sabotage the democratic process by attempting to thwart any federal law his body has passed by majority vote are to be fired and tried for sedition.
My suggestions are not designed to be partisan, just functional. We are witnessing the destruction of the Republican party by the fanatical few. And while I strongly disagree with much of what that party now represents, I do believe the nation needs at least two vibrant political parties. We need to ensure that as the Republican party continues to implode, it doesn’t take down the republic with it!
All in favor, vote “aye.”
*Since they cleverly claim the constitution requires they be paid no matter a government shutdown.