Why Politicians Don't Get No Respect
According to a 2000 study by the University of Maryland, the average House member spends 2-1/2 days out of 10 dialing for dollars and jollying up big and small contributors.
An aside: In a run for the presidency, a candidate must raise $75,000 a day, seven days a week.
So what is really happening in Washington?
The millionaire congresspersons are leading normal lives in comfortable digs, taking their families out for an occasional dinner and mixing with other millionaires.
Presumably their 375 poorer colleagues are spending endless hours on the party circuit, scrounging for food, drink and campaign dollars.
In addition, according to the HILL Newspaper, more than 40 House members are up to their eyeballs in credit card debt. The leaders: Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), with "between $80,000 and $175,000 spread across seven credit cards"; Duncan Hunter (R-CA), with $75,000 to $250,000 across five accounts; and Gary Ackerman (D-NY), with a total balance due of $50,000 to $100,000.
In the mad scramble for food and funds, how can a member of Congress have time to think through a position on anything?
Instead, I am absolutely convinced that the majority in Congress is not only sleep deprived, but also perpetually suffering from raging hangovers and agita. They are forced to rely on smartypants young aides with bizarre, activist agendas to supply them with speeches for the chamber floor and questions to ask in committee hearings.
Tune into C-SPAN and you find a bunch of posturing popinjays with leaden eyes and sour faces energetically blowing off about issues that can only be described as trivial and tangential at best.
Who remembers Brian H. Darling? He was legal counsel to Sen. Mel Martinez (R-FL) who wrote the "Talking Points Memo" that persuaded Congress to jump into the Terri Schiavo brouhaha. Darling wrote, "This is an important moral issue and the pro-life base will be excited that the Senate is debating this important issue." Congress wasted the people's time and wound up getting its fat fanny whacked by every court in which the case came up.