Kremer’s Corner: House Republicans face their last opportunity

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Kremer’s Corner:  House Republicans face their last opportunity

It takes a lot to shock me when it comes to how America is governed. But I couldn’t help feeling a sense of frustration when I heard that the current House of Representatives has the lowest passage rate for legislation in the history of Congress.

In one year of service, that body has passed 27 laws, many of them with little or no consequence.

For the better part of 2023, the Republican majority has spent their time electing a House speaker, kicking him out of office and electing a new speaker, with no knowledge of his background and philosophies.

They do get credit for expelling George Santos, but that action needed Democratic votes because the House leadership unanimously voted to keep him in office.

The moderate members spent most of their time trying to stop the Freedom Caucus from blowing up the institution, but in December they caved in when a motion was made to commence an impeachment inquiry against President Biden.

Even though the House committees have come up with no smoking gun, all of the Republican members voted to commence that inquiry, primarily to make nice to the crazies in their own party.

It is no secret that the impeachment probe was commenced to appease former President Trump, who was pressing hard for such action.

To date, the House has passed only one appropriation bill, with Democratic votes, with another 10 yet to be voted on. Generally, money bills are just that. They allocate sums to the various agencies so that they can continue to operate for another year.

To make things worse the House majority torpedoed an aid to the Israel bill, by adding language defunding the Internal Revenue Service.

Like it or not, the next crisis comes in late January when additional funding bills are needed.

The Freedom Caucus has a whole series of amendments that they would like to incorporate into those bills, which will never pass the Senate. Absent another bipartisan coalition, the House will shut down the country for days, weeks or even months.

The two major victims of the House chaos are Israel and the Ukraine. Both are badly in need of additional American support, but thanks to a small percentage of House members, no money is expected to be approved in the very near future.

The aid to the Ukraine effort has been stalled by the leadership’s insistence that there be some dramatic action on border security. That is an appropriate subject for debate, but even if the Senate agrees to a bipartisan border funding package, the House caucus will find every way possible to sabotage that compromise.

Like it or not, in the next few months, the House leadership and its members will be tested again and again.

The government can’t function without money and a shutdown will inconvenience the taxpayers in hundreds of ways such as air travel delays, park closures, post office cut backs and other interruptions caused by federal employees being sent home for an indefinite time.

2024 is a congressional election year and an angry public has the right to take out their frustrations on all incumbents.

The average voter pays little or no attention to the craziness in Washington, but when federal services are cut or eliminated, questions are asked and the answers do not favor sitting members seeking another term.

Recently, one member of the Republican majority made a revealing statement when he challenged his fellow members to “tell me one thing that we have done, that I can go home and tell my voters that we accomplished?” There was dead silence.

President Lincoln’s most quoted speech is when he stated “a house divided against itself cannot stand.”

It wasn’t that long ago when an angry group of voters took away the majority control from the Democrats. Now it is the Republicans’ turn to govern and pass laws that benefit all of the people of our country.

This is not a partisan observation. The House Republican leadership failed America in 2023. They have less than 10 months to prove if they are worthy of staying in power.

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