March 6, 2015
Congress is having a tough time doing the big stuff. Immigration reform hasn’t gone anywhere. A free-trade treaty has been delayed. Every effort to alter the health care law has been rebuffed.
Maybe Congress should start thinking small.
Its largest headaches have come when it’s tried to move big legislation, especially must-pass bills. Stalemate over rolling back President Obama’s executive action on immigration nearly shut down the Department of Homeland Security.
Maybe lawmakers are out of practice. The previous Congress that ended last year – the 113th – notoriously produced record levels of inactivity. Members of Congress may have simply forgotten how to write and pass real laws. Certainly they’re rusty.
So it makes sense for them to relearn by taking baby steps. At least those efforts, if unsuccessful, won’t shutter the entire federal government or major parts of it.
One option is to jump on the beginner’s slope of legislation: earmarks….