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Saturday, August 03, 2013

Paid Not to Work - Taxpayers Funding an Absentee Congress

The Senate did not have a single five-day work week in Washington for the first seven months of the year.

Our US Congress is elected to represent the American people, but lately they're spending too much time away from the job.  Rather than deal with important issues like supporting immigration reform or recalling the stupid budget sequester that's harming our economic recovery, post the 2008 recession, Congress has decided to take more time off and, thereby, work less.  Still, Congressmen, and Congresswomen and their staffs are continuing to be paid, regardless of how little work they're doing.

A CNN analysis of reports that the 2013 Congress has worked less than during any of the previous 5 years.

House members have been in Washington for 56% of all non-holiday weekdays -- essentially, fewer than three days a week. Senators have walked into the Capitol for 61% of weekdays.

The weeks are not just shorter, but consistently so. The Senate did not have a single five-day work week in Washington for the first seven months of the year. The House had two.
Moreover, even when the Congress and Senate are supposed to be in the Capitol, it's like searching for "Where's Waldo" to find them.  Where they hang out is a mystery. Clearly, most members of the House  and Senate only show up when they know they must be seen.  Often, it's their staffs who monitor what's going in Congress.  Just walk into any Congressional office, pick one at random, and you'll see staff people monitoring the goings on in Congress.  The elected representatives themselves are never there.

Most members of the House/Senate only show up "when it counts", meaning. most show up for votes, although their pre-determined head count is simply a made for TV formality.  Nearly all voting outcomes are known before the tally is counted.
It's high time Americans fire this do nothing and absentee Congress, especially the Republicans who are obstructing governmental progress.  American didn't elect Congressional obstructionists who don't show up for work.  Our democracy elected people who should represent our best interest, like:
1.  Help to create jobs,
2.  Improve our economic recovery
3.  Uphold laws like the implementation of Health Care    Reform, and
4.  Create progressive laws like immigration reform
Instead, Americans are paying mega millions for the Republicans in Congress to (a) stifle job creation by holding fast to the stupid budget sequester (b) wastefully taking votes to recall Health Care Reform and (c) obstructing immigration reform including a compassionate path to citizenship for illegal immigrants. 
There's no employer I know who pays employees who don't work, yet Americans are funding an absentee Congress. 
Republican obstructionists in the Congress would be fired if they were employed in a private company. Instead, they're soaking up taxpayer money not to work. They should be fired as soon as possible and replaced with a government that shows up to represent the people who elect them.

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