Congress does its work, and so it goes …
We should all be appalled at what our Congress is doing in this new era of Republican majority rule. Here’s a sampling of what happened during the week ending Friday, Jan. 23.
On the energy front, they passed a bill to expedite pipeline construction approvals, and then: 1) defeated an amendment to bar TransCanada Corp., a foreign national company, from using eminent domain proceedings to acquire American properties for its Keystone XL pipeline construction, 2) exempted that company from paying taxes into the federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund, ensuring that we taxpayers would foot the bill for any cleanups, and finally, 3) tabled an amendment to keep the Keystone pipeline oil in the USA to boost American energy independence. This type of broadside legislation seems more in line with the governing goals of the Canadian Parliament than the United States Congress. Just another example of how we, the citizens of these United States of America, although we elect our Congress, cannot pay for them to be elected, and may not necessarily, be truly, represented by them.
On the health care front, the House voted to prohibit the use of federal funds to subsidize Affordable Care Act plans that cover abortion and then defeated another bill that would have prevented the above bill from compromising the medical privacy of women, including rape and incest victims, with respect to their choice or use of health policies. It really doesn’t matter that there is a moral objection to abortion, the fact is that abortion is legal in this country and to deny legal health care to women is more where the moral objection should rest.
On the climate front, they adopted a nonbinding resolution that climate change is real and not a hoax, but defeated another measure that the climate change is “significantly” caused by human activity. Well, at least climate change has now been officially acknowledged by the legislative branch of our government, albeit in a nonbinding sort of way.
Hang in there people, the ride is just beginning!
William R. Faulk