As we know from press accounts the Congress and the administration reached an agreement on a $1.1 trillion government spending bill on Tuesday, December 9. By Thursday, December 11, the House of Representatives had approved the spending bill and by Saturday December 13 the Senate gave its approval.
Presumably by Thursday the Members of the House of Representatives had read all 1,603 pages of the spending bill before voting on it. Assuming a full 48 hour period from Tuesday’s introduction to Thursday’s passage that means Members of House were reading just more than 33 pages an hour for 48 straight hours in order to read through the whole bill without stopping to sleep, eat, or even ponder what they had just read before voting to send the bill over to the Senate so it could give its approval.
To think that each Member of Congress and the Senate read each word of the bill before its passage defies logic. Yes, staff and Members of Congress did word searches of the text to see if certain agreeable or objectionable provisions were included, but did each elected Member of the House of Representatives and Senator read the whole the whole spending bill before voting on it? No way.
The likelihood of what happened is that majorities of both the House and Senate gave their approval to spending $1.1 trillion of our money without reading the whole thing.
That is depressing.
As we are set to begin a new year and a new Congress, let’s hope both treat us better.
Before joining CNP (formerly WHD Government Affairs), Steve served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Senate Affairs. He was the key liaison between the Department of Defense (DOD) and the U.S. Senate, assuring that the Senate was informed of the DOD’s plans, programs and goals.
The views in this blog post represent the viewpoints of individual team members, not Capstone National Partners as a whole.