Editorial: Shutdown shakedown

Latest dysfunction highlights again what a lousy Congress we have

You’ve got to hand it to Senate Democrats: They sure went to the mat trying to legalize illegals brought here as children – albeit to the detriment of legal, taxpaying citizens, by shutting down our government.

 

If only Democrats would make such a dramatic, traumatic stand for the rest of us! Such as refusing to fund the government unless Congress:

Stopped stealing our Social Security funds.

Balanced the budget.

Merely wrote a budget on time.

Secured the border.

Eliminated wasteful spending.

Ended either financial, legal or tacit support for “sanctuary cities” that harbor illegal aliens.

Stopped using taxpayer funds to cover up members’ sexual harassment peccadillos – and demanded that perpetrators pay us back.

Appropriated sufficient funds and equipment to our volunteer military standing guard over an increasingly dangerous and hostile world.

These are just a few of the things Senate and House Democrats could go to the mat for. Instead, they’re doing the opposite, almost without exception.

They constantly push spending, and never acknowledge the government could go without each and every dime it takes from us and more. They’re fighting border security tooth and nail – while encouraging illegal immigration and even the official protection of it through sanctuary cities.

Most outrageously, Senate Democrats were willing to cut off paychecks to federal workers and even our military in order to stand arm in arm with the children of illegals.

Many Americans would’ve been more than sympathetic to the cause of the so-called “dreamers” brought here illegally as children. Polls show nearly 70 percent of Republicans favor a path to legalization for them – including two-thirds of Trump’s core supporters.

In short, Senate Democrats disingenuously ginned up a fake crisis – and cost federal workers all manner of indigestion over the weekend – in order to grandstand and seek political advantage.

Their cynical calculation turned out to be a historic miscalculation: Polls show pluralities of Americans rightly blamed Democrats for the shutdown – which is why its architect, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, caved so quickly.

Remember this November that it was congressional Democrats who threw taxpayers and federal workers under the bus this past weekend in order to circle their wagons for illegal immigrants.

But don’t just blame Democrats for the dumpster fire that is Congress. Neither party has distinguished itself.

Let’s use this short but disgraceful debacle to remind ourselves just how dysfunctional Congress has become.

Consider:

We’re sending the federal government record amounts of cash – $29 billion more in the last three months of 2017 than the year prior. And yet, Congress is still borrowing some 40 cents of every dollar it spends; raiding our retirement nest egg to make their spending look less onerous; and running up the debt, which is now over $20 trillion and rising.

And look at what we’re getting for our dollar: Even with all those tax revenues and funds borrowed from future generations, our border remains unsecured, our roads, bridges, highways, airports and other infrastructure are crumbling, and Washington has put the world’s best health care system on dialysis.

The question is, why are we putting up with such a lousy, do-nothing, malfunctioning bunch – and how much longer will we do it?

 

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Wed, 02/21/2018 - 22:10

Rick McKee Editorial Cartoon