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Herding Cats, Easy in Comparison

Fri, Jun 28th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

Organizing Democrats has often been likened to “herding cats.” Cat owners know just how independent a cat can be.

As of late, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) would probably find herding cats comparably easy. He has failed to wrangle those rebellious non-establishment Republicans into his corral. They have become even harder to herd than cats, as they are proudly recalcitrant. Some House Republicans have not only refused to be herded, but have openly defied the leadership.

Republicans are generally considered to be conservative, but traditional establishment Republicans are not nearly conservative enough for the far right wing of the party. Those feral strays of the Tea Party caucus continue to deny the House leadership their support. They demand bills that spell out their ideology or they vote against them. With them, there is no room for compromise.

The surprising and stunning defeat of the $940 billion farm bill recently makes passage of the more controversial immigration reform less of a likelihood. Even if the Senate manages to get substantial bi-partisan support for the measure, the increasingly undisciplined House will provide a much greater hurdle. Speaker Boehner has said he won’t bring an immigration bill up for a vote unless a majority of Republicans support it.

Sixty-two Republicans voted against the farm bill. The Republicans are the majority in the House, but the Republican establishment does not have a clear “establishment” majority, so they need to bring along those rebellious Tea Party Republicans or gain support from the Democratic minority. Only 24 Democrats supported the farm bill, in part due to an amendment that cut the food stamp program more than the bill passed by the Senate did. Several conservative amendments were tacked onto the bill which served to limit the support of Democrats, which brought the bill down.

Normally, the Speaker doesn’t bring a bill to the floor for a vote when there is not sufficient support from the speaker’s own party to pass the bill. Boehner publicly supported the farm bill. Is Boehner weak or is it simply not possible to bring the factions together?

The fate of the farm bill is a vivid example of wanting it all and getting nothing. In order to get the support necessary to produce a bill that benefits the farm economy and provides food support for those in need, there needs to be compromise. For one political faction to strive for their idea of perfection, the whole bill is doomed and the essence of imperfection on most every level is achieved. There are no winners in the end, especially the American people.

The inability of Congress to pass a five year farm bill creates more uncertainty for the industry. Congressional dysfunction continues to create detours that are negatives for the health of the American economy.

The Senate, on the other hand, has produced members of both parties that have worked together both in long term budget planning and for immigration reform. The House members seem unable to compromise on anything. Boehner’s plan for the budget late last year never was brought to the floor because of the leadership’s inability to get enough support for the plan.

The Hastert Rule

The Hastert Rule is really not a rule at all. It has not been codified into law. There is an implied pressure on the Speaker to only bring bills to the floor that are supported by a majority of the speaker’s party.

Three pieces of legislation that have passed this year, including the fiscal cliff legislation passed on New Year’s Day, the Hurricane Sandy relief bill, and Violence Against Women Act, were brought to the floor for a vote even though they lacked majority support.

Bills like these may be allowed to come to the floor because the majority party sees it in their best interest to have the bills become law, but they want to see them pass with mostly minority party support. This allows most Republicans to vote against the bills, making it less likely they will face a primary election battle.

There has been some effort to make the Hastert Rule codified law. This would be unhealthy for the country and create even more dysfunction in Washington.

Safe Districts

As I have maintained in the past, the only way to reduce the dysfunction in Washington is to eliminate so-called safe or non competitive districts. Congressional districts have been established to heavily favor one party or the other. As many as 80 percent of the 435 districts are safe or non competitive. This makes it more likely for an incumbent to face a primary election challenge from a more extreme member of the same party, than any serious challenge from the opposing party in the general election. This results in a Congress with more and more members coming from the extreme wings of their respective parties. More congressional members on the right and left fringes drive dysfunction and only widen the divide.

The threat of a primary election challenge keeps congressional members from compromising with the other party or even supporting legislation like the recent farm bill if it doesn’t represent the ideology of the most extreme persons in their party. There is no reward for compromise and moving forward. This contributes to the hopeless tug of war that defines Washington today.


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3:02:15, Jun 29th 2013

Dave Francis says:

1986 Amnesty Deja Vu

Sen. Ted Cruz said after the senate legislation the following about Senate majority decision: "Sadly, this bill won't fix the problem with our immigration system and will only encourage more illegal immigration and human suffering and added,

“I strongly support commonsense immigration reform that secures the border before legalization, fixes our legal immigration system, and upholds the rule of law. This bill isn't it."

All those who signed onto this bill are warned of the consequences, because hardly anybody read the bill outright before approving it? All these Senate Republicans have risked their political future. Alexander, Tenn.; Ayotte, N.H.; Chiesa, N.J.; Collins, Maine; Corker, Tenn.; Flake, Ariz.; Graham, S.C.; Hatch, Utah; Heller, Nev.; Hoeven, N.D.; Kirk, Ill.; McCain, Ariz.; Murkowski, Alaska; Rubio, Fla. Then having that obnoxious witch Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano with her hand on the switch, with full authority is tantamount to a catastrophe in the future. I wouldn’t trust this loose cannon advocate, than I could spit or puke. She has shown her irritation to the “Rule of law” by releasing dangerous illegal aliens felons back on the streets, using the Sequester as a flimsy excuse. With this Political appointee the chances of immigration being fully enforced with her in control, is a giant mistake.

This De facto amnesty is a malfunction to enforce the nation's immigration laws on the interior of the United States. It is not a border issue. Chris Crane, president of the union who represents 7,000 immigration and customs enforcement officers stated, it cannot and will not end as a result of amplified border security. It must be determined through increased interior enforcement? But the fact is that the man who knew just about everything governing the border was ignored by the Gang of Eight.

To me is blatantly obvious that those already here remain hidden from view and not detectable, which the “OVERSTAYS”. Just like so many weak parts of law, such as unlawful entry, being no more than a civil misdemeanor and not a federal FELONY? In my view so many flaws in the laws are deliberate. So instead of building up the borders with 20.000 more U.S. immigration agents at the borders, split them up and place 10.000 for internal enforcement. Remind your representatives by phoning any of the100 Senators and 435 Representatives for State or Federal at toll-free number -- 1-888-978-3094--.You may phone the United States Capitol circuit at (202) 224-3121. A terminal operator will connect you directly with the Senate office or just about anybody in Washington you request to speak with, after being confronted by an aid.

‘Do what you will is the whole of the law’, seems to be the mantra of the Obama administration and unless you read the Senate Immigration law, you will find out all the gaping holes, special waivers, omissions that makes this reform bill passed to the House valueless for serious enforcement.


There are too many inconsistencies, as the act does not name the border fence as Double layer parallel running fences. Why 20.000 agents at the border, when interior enforcement would be better served, with at least 10.000 to run down incorrigible employers who will be hiring thousands of overstays and illegal aliens claiming legal status who will be stealing jobs from Americans, as businesses will not have offer the health care, as a benefit. Obamacare has major flaws and even huge cost that as yet cannot be imagined. Every American of African descent, European descent,, Hispanic descent, Latin descent, Caribbean descent, Asian descent and every hemisphere who are going to suffer under this soiled immigration act and likely to be lose their job to new legalized people, especially in the working class. The only non-sufferers are the welfare leeches, except that are really handicapped or sick. I am sure it won’t be too long, before epithets are addressed to me and the race card; they have nothing else in their vocabulary.

YOU CAN ALSO BLAST FAXES AT numbersusa and write your own message or copy the one exhibited. At americanpatrol is a daily report from newspapers across the country, illustrating the huge rise in drunk drivers, and other heinous crimes the left oriented press keeps suppressed. For legal information about corruption in Washington and in state assemblies at judicialwatch Also Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has set up an email address for people to contact if they believe they were targeted by the IRS. That address is: Senator Ted Cruz of Texas has launched a national petition. It is at SecureBordersNow,” Cruz said. “In just a week, we’ve have reached 150,000 people from all over the country sign that petition speaking out to say ‘Do not do legalization first. Secure the borders first, fix the problem.”?


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