Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., walks to the chamber as lawmakers negotiate on the emergency coronavirus response legislation, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Last night, the Senate failed to close debate on a Wuhan virus relief bill. The vote was along party lines, and the Democrats are dead set on making this a political fight despite the fact that aid in various areas is desperately needed.
However, I’m not here solely to bash Democrats today. I really think that they deserve a lot of anger directed their way, but a part of this failure to pass a bill stems from Congress constantly throwing everything together in one bill and making it very easy for people to nitpick and reject the whole thing. Why on earth, in times as desperate as these, are we not quickly passing a bunch of smaller bills, so that the good ideas we can all agree on don’t get held up while we continue to debate the bad ones?
For example, other than the foolish attempt to tie any direct aid to citizens and families to 2018 tax returns, most of us can agree that this needs to go out ASAP. There is a need to get money back into the economy, and this would be one of the more efficient ways to do so.
That idea is getting tied up by corporate bailouts, which everyone who has a brain knew would be a sticking point in some form or another. And while it’s nice that our Senators want to make sure all American businesses are supported, if we’re being honest, we know that most major American companies can weather this storm. Small businesses will not necessarily be able to.
This complaint extends beyond the COVID-19, by the way. This is about Congress being as inefficient as possible when it comes to passing any important legislation. It would be so much easier to pass crucial legislation and reject the bad ones if they were clearly separated. But they never are, because special interests love legislation packed with goodies for their employers.
We live in extraordinary times.