The GOP Congress hasn’t gotten much done this year.
In order to move any major piece of controversial legislation, 60 votes are needed in the Senate to break the filibuster. The only way to get around this legislative obstacle is through the budget reconciliation process which is what Obama used to pass Obamacare and the GOP used to pass the tax cuts.
While everyone was sleeping last night, Rand Paul and House Democrats caused a second government shutdown which went unnoticed because Congress passed the two year budget deal and President Trump signed it this morning. This means the GOP has all but given up on using the budget reconciliation process to pass anything of significance in 2018 and 2019. This is probably a good thing because they would have used the power do something like entitlement reform anyway.
What then is the point of the GOP Congress? It passes bills like the Charlottesville resolution, creating Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park and now it is renaming the St. Louis Arch which is officially the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial:
“WASHINGTON • The Gateway Arch National Park is about to become official.
The U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation, which was approved by the Senate in December, that renames what is now officially known as the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. The bill passed the House by voice vote on Wednesday.
The legislation was sponsored in the Senate by Sens. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., and Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.; and in the House by Reps. William Lacy Clay, D-St. Louis, and Ann Wagner, R-Ballwin.
Blunt said that “renaming the park will better highlight its central feature and make it more immediately recognizable to the millions of people who visit St. Louis every year.”
McCaskill said that “as the memorial grounds reopen this summer, it’s the perfect time to bring our majestic park together under a new name that highlights this remarkable symbol.” …
I will probably get some more angry emails about this. It is a “blackpill” to point out that the GOP is using power to do politically correct shit like taking Thomas Jefferson’s name off the St. Louis Arch. This is what is actually being done in Washington with the mandate of the 2016 election.
Since it is a “blackpill” to note that the GOP has GIVEN UP on using budget reconciliation in the Senate for two years and therefore doing ANYTHING that Democrats object to, this fact will likely go unmentioned outside of the OD audience. The same people will be tuning into podcasts and reading newsfeeds patiently waiting for the next two years for Trump to move his agenda forward beyond the tax cuts that were passed with budget reconciliation in December.
The thing is, the cake is baked now with this budget agreement. There isn’t going to be anything else of significance EXCEPT those tax cuts and now this huge increase in military spending. In the end, we’re going to get conservative judges, the tax cuts, deregulation and an increase in military spending out of the first term of the Trump presidency. In addition to that, we might get a few things that a key number of Democrats don’t object to like banking reform and possibly an infrastructure bill.