The Omibus bill-now-law is a small cherry on top of the mounting evidence that our Congressional legislature is broken. The system is designed to empower those in charge that hold no Constitutional authority. A Senate Majority leader has no derivative in the Constitution, yet this title has such an influence on the legislative process. Consider this:
BREAKING: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he'll introduce legislation removing hemp from list of controlled substances.
— AP South U.S. Region (@APSouthRegion) March 26, 2018
Have not such bills been floating around in Congress for years. Let’s see back in 2015, a Congressmen introduced H.R.1013 – Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act. It was last sent to the subcommittee on trade and the bill has never been seen again. The current Congress has a dozen or so marijuana related bills all sitting in committee, but legalizing Hemp may see the light of day because McConnell wants to appease a group of people, while similar bills are missing in committee. Most people favor Congressional term limits. Many run on them. Yet during the 1990s, many bills/ Constitutional Amendments were proposed. All of them never saw the light of day once going being sent to a committee. Senators Perdue (R-GA) and Kennedy (R-LA) introduced the Balanced Budget Accountability Act on January 11th, 2017. Nothing has become of it in over a year. Both Senators opposed the Omnibus spending bill, in case you were curious.
See my point? Instead of simple to understand legislation having its honest day on the floor, we the people instead get ramrodded with behemoth bills none of theses legislatures read. This monstrosity gets forced on the Senate and is instantly, because of the likes of McConnell and Schumer, at the tippy top of the priority list. In a matter of days, this bill passed the Senate while principled solutions from the left or right never see the light of day for they were not written by lobbyist who own the committees and majority leaders. Voting out the McConnells isn’t enough. We need to fundamentally change the legislative process.
Congress is the most important branch of government. For this reason, the legislative branch is Article 1 in the constitution. In Article 1 Section 7 we find the legislative process. Section 7 deals with the veto process rather than getting nitty-gritty about committees and subcommittees. Looking at the current situation, it’s clear Congress is too big to be effective for the people. The legislative process empowers committees who host members whom are no more qualified to legislate on matters than nonmembers. It bogs down legislatures who come up with solutions outside of their groups.
I purpose we systematically rewrite the song “I’m just a Bill.” We need to get rid of committees and instead move towards a docket system. Under the Docket System, every bill will be voted on it its respective chamber. This is beneficial because we will see just where our elected officials truly stand on a matter of issues. A bill will be introduced and from there receive it’s day to be voted on, a very well off date, and schedule hearings if necessary, also in the distant future. If a bill has one sponsor, it will not be prioritized. In order to move higher on the docket, the bill needs to gain more sponsors. If a bill reaches a threshold of sponsors, say 35 in the Senate, it can get prioritized within and be voted on within a week. Bills that advance through one chamber will get prioritized in the next. The system is designed to get backlogged, but if matters are significant, legislators will sponsor legislature on them. Our criminal justice system has a process for seeing every case according to the 6th Amendment. I believe it possible for Congress to enable a system that is attentive to every bill, needing only be a fraction as fast as the trial process.
The purpose of this would be to first strip Congress of extra-constitutional titles, and second to ensure that bills are simple, heard, and voted on. Otherwise, we are stuck hearing things about Kate’s Law, the REINS Act, Concealed Carry Reciprocity, term limits, balanced budget amendments, and all these nice things campaign conservatives support. Truthfully, the issues in Congress are more numerous in the Senate than the House of Representatives. Kate’s Law passed the House and was received in the Senate on July 10, 2017. No action has taken place since in a Republican held Senate. Yet the Omnibus got the ultimate fast pass. We need real change. As Congress buries itself in arcane rules and procedures designed to preserve a political class, so the legislative process is slowed for legislators who genuinely want to drain the swamp. The Senate Majority Leader need not exist in official title or duties. Only the titles and processes laid in Article 1 are the framework for our legislative process. The rest is entirely optional.