New Castle News

October 2, 2013

Our Opinion: Congress sinks to new low in latest shutdown

By Staff
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — Right about now, we’re wishing we had the nation’s concession on tar and feathers.

The conduct displayed by the United States Congress in its latest tantrum over budgetary and health care matters is nothing short of shameful.

Lawmakers ought to be in hiding, afraid to draw attention to themselves. Instead, they and their staffs — who conveniently avoided the consequences of a federal shutdown — are busy churning out press releases and emails claiming it’s someone else’s fault.

Well, it’s all their faults. Unfortunately, political arrogance in Washington does not allow for the shame these ongoing incidents create for the country.

Here is the United States, supposedly the greatest nation in the world, bumbling around like a failed state, unable to cobble together even the most basic functions of government.

We can only imagine what other nations think of this. Actually, we don’t have to imagine. The Internet makes it easy to see that America’s leadership is portrayed as bumbling laughingstocks.

And so they are.

Lawmakers are deserving of utter condemnation and contempt from the American people. And we hope citizens see through any charade that this is being done for their benefit. We can assure you, this is not how a responsible government functions.

Of course, Republicans and Democrats will tell you it’s the fault of the other party. The truth is that the basic leadership needed to hammer out budgetary and related agreements is the responsibility of both parties. They have utterly failed to exercise that leadership.

The parties have degenerated to the point where they are nothing more than spoiled brats, holding their breaths until they turn blue.

And we are supposed to have sympathy for them?

House Republicans say they want concessions on Obamacare. What they really want is to kill it, despite ample evidence that is not going to happen. They have taken the federal government into shutdown territory over the matter.

That’s not how representative government is supposed to work. Like it or not, Obamacare is the law of the land. If the Republicans think it should be replaced, they need to produce an alternative and allow it to be judged by the legislative process and the American people.

But they haven’t done that. They have nothing to offer.

Meanwhile, Senate Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid rejected the formation of a House-Senate conference committee to reach a settlement. That’s precisely what should happen, because that’s how differences are historically resolved between the two chambers. Showboat tactics don’t cut it.

Make no mistake: The American people are being betrayed by their representatives in Washington. This nonsense has to stop.