Less than six weeks to go before the most pivotal election in recent memory and the country’s lack of leadership in the Legislative and Executive Branches is on full display for all the world to see. The current Congress has displayed a lack of leadership throughout its entire term. The majority and minority leaders, the Whips, the Speaker of the House, the committee chairpersons and other leaders have been unable to control the fringe elements in their respective parties. As a result, they have been unable to eliminate squabbling and forge coalitions to pass significant legislation. This Congress has only passed 173 laws, roughly half of a typical Congress’ output. In addition, it adjourned earlier than any other Congress since 1960, leaving unresolved significant bills dealing with the expiration of the “Bush tax cuts,” forestalling the Post Office’s insolvency, a Farm Bill, and other matters. They plan to take up these matters after the election. Good luck with that. At that point, it will be a “lame duck” Congress as some current members will have lost re-election. It should be interesting to see how that plays out.
In fact the leadersip is so low profile and inept that few people can even name them. For the record they are: Harry Reid – Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell – Minority Leader, Jon Kyl – Minority Whip, John Boehner – Speaker of the House, Eric Cantor – Majority Leader, Kevin McCarthy – Majority Whip, Nancy Pelosi – Minority Leader, Steny Hoyer – Minority Whip. They are a far cry from the lions of yesteryear on both sides of the aisle, such as Sam Rayburn, Everett Dirksen, Ted Kennedy, Bob Dole, Hubert Humphrey, Jacob Javits, Lyndon Johnson, and Newt Gingrich, who knew how to compromise with their counterparts and accomplish things.
President Obama was right to criticize Congress for adjourning early so that its members could concentrate on their respective re-election campaigns, however, he is guilty of the exact same thing! What hypocrisy! First, he told Mr. Netanyahu he could not meet with him while he was in NY for the UN meetings because he was too busy campaigning. Now it seems he has no plans to meet with any of the world leaders. He is letting a perfect opportunity go by because he is too busy campaigning. In view of all the crises in the world right now – Iran, Syria, Libya, Egypt to name a few, one would think Mr. Obama could somehow find the time. It should be noted that former presidents Clinton and Bush 43 did find the time to interrupt their campaigning and meet with world leaders under similar circumstances.
Mr. Obama does, however, have enough time to yuk it up with David Letterman, Jay Z , the “View” women, and his other entertainment pals. After nearly four years in office he has not learned that Americans do not want a celebrity President; they want a competent President.