Dick Morris points out that while the Democrats promised a '5-day work week,' as part of their effort to change Washington, they are working a 2.5 day week this week, and won't work a full week this month.
He further says that Democrats ought to move more aggressively on a proposal to create an outside ethics process - something I have been advocating for months.
...Responding to well-deserved criticisms, the new House majority leader, Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), with great fanfare, promised a five-day work week. But that was just talk. When it was the Republicans who were scheduling the eight-day month, Hoyer was outraged. But now that the Democrats control the calendar, he considers a football game to be a legitimate excuse for a vacation day. As he said in reference to the new House minority leader, John Boehner (R-Ohio), “There is a very important event happening Monday night, particularly for those who live in Ohio and Florida. In the spirit of comity, and I know if Maryland were playing, I would want to be accommodated, and I want to accommodate my friend, Mr. Boehner...”
And there won’t be a five-day work week at all in January. The Martin Luther King holiday falls next week and the Democrats and Republicans are holding respective retreats during the following two weeks. The Democrats are planning a day of speeches in two weeks, including one by Bill Clinton. Hey folks, ever think about doing this on a weekend?
So the promised “five-day” work week starts on Tuesday at 6:30 and ends at about 2 on Friday — more like a two-and-a-half-day work week...
Meanwhile in the Senate, while Sens. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), Russ Feingold (D-Wis.), Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) fight for an independent watchdog to enforce lobbying laws, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) insists that hearings must first be held on the issue. This is hardly a new idea. It’s been proposed for years and makes sense. We’ve seen how little policing of lobbyists has been done — witness Jack Abramoff and his cohorts. Requiring hearings is just another stalling tactic. And, in any event, Reid is the last person who should be in charge of designing the self-policing of lobbyists. For years, his three sons and son-in-law made millions by lobbying for Nevada interests — often working out of his Senate office. Only when the press called attention to the practice did Reid bar the boys. Talk about the goats guarding the garbage! Sen. Obama spoke of “institutional resistance” to the watchdog provisions. That institutional resistance has led to serious lobbying transgressions that must be stopped.
If the Democrats want to stay in power, and if Congress wants to win the support and trust of the American people, they’d better start thinking about how their actions resonate with the average voter...
Morris is absolutely right about this. They better be able to go to the voters next year and tell them that they delivered on their promise to change the culture in Washington. If they can't, it makes it much easier for the GOP to retake one or both houses of Congress.
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