Saturday, April 16, 2011

A Bit Of Parliamentary Funny In Congress

Okay, get this, because it is funny:

Yesterday in the House of Representatives, the Republicans passed that budget written by Paul Ryan. However, there was a second, alternative Republican budget, called the "RSC Budget" that also required a vote. This budget was apparently much harsher, nastier to poor people, nice old ladies, and innocent kittens, and just a little too damaging to the Republican image.

Thankfully, Republicans had the Paul Ryan budget, and it was already passed. All they had to do was take a minute to vote on this second "RSC" budget, make sure it failed (because if it passed, it would supersede the Paul Ryan budget), everything would be fine, and they could go home.

Unfortunately (a) most Republicans didn't want to get caught voting "no" for an even more austere budget on this symbolic vote; they wanted to be true to their image of cutting the budget anywhere, anyplace, anytime — but they had enough Republicans willing to vote "no" with the Democrats to make sure this second budget did not pass — and (b) they didn't count on the Democrats messing around with them.

The Republicans all voted "yes" to pass the second fuzzy-bunny-murdering budget, except for the few enough Republicans who voted "no" to ensure its failure.

Then, all the Democrats started their little prank: They started voting "present" — neither "yes" nor "no". There were suddenly way to many "yes" votes and not enough "no" votes. The wrong budget was going to pass, and Paul Ryan's much friendlier budget was going to go out the window.

Well, the Republicans realized they had been pranked and did exactly what the Democrats expected them to do: They held the vote open for a couple of extra hours, twisted the arms of several dozen of their various Congressmen and convinced them to take a little lump on their reputation of "saying yes to any budget cut, no matter what" and got them to vote "no" on their own second budget so that it would fail and save the first "Paul Ryan" budget.

Just a little bit of congressional and political horse play... well done.

No comments: