Bob Schieffer Blasts GOP 'Do Nothing Congress'
Yesterday on CBS's "Face the Nation", host Bob Schieffer claimed Congress is failing in its job to improve the lives of their constituents, and it wasting time and resources debating trivial conservative matters like Constitutional Amendments banning gay marriage and flag burning:
"It's been so long since Congress did anything, I have to stop and think to remember what it is they're supposed to do. Oh, I remember now, improve the lives of the people who elected them. I can't think of another reason; can you?
Don't misunderstand me. Congress does stay busy. The debate on the constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage took a lot of time. Of course, all sides knew there was no chance it would pass. Did the debate improve your life?"
After complaining about the time wasted on immigration reform, he continued:
"This week begins perhaps the greatest time waster of all, yet another debate on a constitutional amendment to ban flag burning, which has as much chance of passing as I have of pitching in the World Series."
Just because a policy will not pass does that mean there should be no debate on the subject? Would Schieffer feel the same way if a healthcare plan like the one proposed by the Clinton Administration in the 1990s were the subject of debate? After all, it too would have no chance of passage.
The greater concern, is that these commentaries attacking the Republicans in Congress and thinly veiled in the cloak of bipartisanship are not new for Schieffer. On April 9, he also complained that nothing gets done in Congress, and this he blamed on the special interest groups:
"How many times on how many issues have we heard that? What happened in the Senate last week wasn't about immigration, it was about what's gone wrong with Congress, which can't do much of anything anymore. Here is the main reason: Our elected officials have lost the ability to compromise. In order to raise the money needed to get elected, they have to sign off with so many special interest groups before they get to Washington that their positions are set in stone long before they arrive at the Capitol.
You don't get special interest money by promising to give the special interest ideas a fair hearing and your best judgment, you get the money by promising to take their side come hell or high water..."
On May 21, as noted by Brent Baker here, Schieffer referred to amendments voted on in the Senate making English the national language of America "silly":
"So we'll hear more about silly issues between now and election day."
Perhaps Schieffer deems Constitutional Amendments banning flag burning and gay marriage as some of these silly issues we’re hearing about. They may be silly to him because he disagrees with them. What about people who think these are issues of national importance, don’t they deserve a debate on these issues? But by deeming these conservative issues as silly, Schieffer believes he can tell you what issues are important, and is a demonstration of arrogance on his part that he thinks he and his cronies in the media ought to set the national political agenda, rather than America’s duly elected Congress and President.