Friday, October 14, 2011

Super Secret Committee

Because Congress couldn't play nice in the traditional manner, someone came up with the idea of putting together a "Super Committee," one that would be bipartisan and would find a way to reduce the federal deficit. Congress then decided to give it "Super Powers" by which any consensus reached by the committee would be entitled to an up-or-down vote without debate. Congress also gave it an additional power:

The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction is a 12-member, bipartisan panel that has been meeting,mostly in secret, to devise a proposal to cut deficits by as much as $1.5 trillion over the decade. The committee was created from the summer debt ceiling deal, and has wide-ranging authority but a short window to accomplish its task. [Emphasis added]

That's right, the committee work is being done in secret. We don't know what is being considered for remedies to the economic miasma, we don't know what exact input is being given the committee or from whom, and we won't know until a bill is reported out. It's bad enough that a committee has been created with extra-constitutional powers of any kind, but that it is allowed to operate in secret is horrendous.

On the somewhat brighter side, we won't have to wait long.

...The committee has until Nov. 23 to vote on a proposal. If a committee majority passes the proposal, it would be presented to Congress for an up-or-down vote, with no amendments, by Dec. 23. By January, the committee, by law, disbands..

So much for a transparent government. This doesn't even rate one cheer for democracy.



Blogger John Gardner said...

That and haven't we had like 3 job creation committees now? It doesn't seem like the recommendations from any of them have been good or useful or even used so far. how is this one going to be any different?

10:09 AM  

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