What is increasingly clear is that the U.S. Senate cannot govern. They cannot negotiate between the two parties, and they cannot reach decisions that benefit the people, even when the people are suffering. The Senate, I’m afraid, has got to go. Why do we still need this holdover from the ancient imperial British House of Lords, especially when they can’t legislate and compromise in a manner that credits our U.S. democracy?
On Oct. 12, I wrote here about how the Senate, which represents real estate (the States) rather than people (because of the disparity of state populations), was gridlocked on the President’s jobs bill. Now the Senate yesterday entertained a portion of the bill that would support hiring or rehiring some of the teachers, firefighters and police that had been cut back by local governments because of their reduced revenues due to the economic depression. This portion of the bill would have been funded by a 1/2 percent tax increment on individuals with a million-dollar or more income. The Senate again gridlocked at 50-50.
So, thanks to the Senate, we must forego any federal relief for the agencies of government that educate and protect the people. This is an inexcusable default by this dysfunctional relic of our supposedly representative democracy. This country needs a Constitutional Convention before we get a 21st century version of the people’s French Revolution to sort things out. Or, maybe, just maybe, our two even more dysfunctional political parties could resolve to negotiate in good faith on behalf of the best interests of the American people?