Republicans are beginning to drop hints that they are not going to get tax reform passed, having now not passed Obamacare repeal. They have too many internal factions, let alone getting Democrat assistance. Now, as some Republicans call for the abolition of the legislative filibuster, we should remind ourselves that all of this is a feature, not a bug.
The founding fathers and those who came after them made it ridiculously hard to get anything other than a post office name change passed through Congress. The filibuster is but one part of it. Having a majority of the majority party with a majority in each house as well is part of it. Balancing federal and state concerns is another. Ensuring the constitutionality of the legislation is yet another concern. Getting the President on board is another matter altogether.
It is hard to get things passed and the real genius of our system is that the more divided we are as a nation the harder it is to get anything big passed through congress. That frustrates both sides, but that inability to pass anything means that when something is passed it really is something the public supports.
Republicans are now as frustrated as Democrats were for the last eight years. Good.
It is useful to remind all sides that gridlock is good. It keeps our rights protected from the lobbyists and congressmen in Washington. That the Congressional Review Act legislation can sail through is a good check on the bureaucrats who try to govern us when Congress does not.
Stop fretting about government not doing something. The desire to “just do something” is what gets 90% of all bad legislation passed.
The less Congress does, the better off we all are. We have fifty states. They can and should be doing the heavy lifting. We are seeing that with California’s healthcare proposal and New York’s free college tuition plan. Let the great laboratories of democracy sort out the nation’s ills and keep Congress gridlocked.