After seeing the House rush to spend over $1.1 trillion more of our hard-earned tax dollars last night, I have a few questions.
First, what the heck is in it? Members of Congress weren’t even given time to read the 1,764-page bill. Isn’t this the kind of thing we are supposed to be against? I remember Nancy Pelosi saying that we would have to pass Obamacare to see what was in it. Why did the Republican-controlled House of Representatives do something similar?
Secondly, why does the bill fund President Obama’s unlawful executive actions? The authority of the executive branch has exploded in recent years, as we have seen from countless executive orders and federal agencies run amok. The Constitution provides a very powerful check against this expansion of power to the Congress: the power of the purse. But any Constitutional check or balance is only good if it’s actually used. Funding the continued expansion of executive authority we have seen in recent years is basically saying to the president, “No big deal.”
The bill funds our massive federal government through September 30, 2015, except for the Department of Homeland Security, which is funded through February 27, 2015. We are told that this will somehow stop President Obama by delaying the fight over funding of his immigration actions until early next year, when Republicans control the Senate.
In fact, as Heritage Action pointed out, that’s probably not true:
“Some have suggested the short-term funding for DHS will provide conservatives another opportunity to block President Obama’s actions in early 2015, but that approach is problematic because: 1) it forces House Republicans, who are virtually unanimous in their opposition to the President’s actions, to cast an initial vote to fund that lawless action; 2) it would occur 100 days after the President’s announcement, meaning the program is likely to be up and running; 3) it removes nearly all the pressure on President Obama and his partisan allies to choose between defending their lawless amnesty policies and funding all other areas of government; and 4) leading Republicans have refused to offer up a viable plan to stop the President’s executive amnesty in February.”
Heritage Action strongly recommended a “no” vote from the House, saying it will be included as a key vote on their legislative score card.
Finally, have we forgotten about the United State’s stratospheric national debt, and the enormous threat that it poses to not only our economic well-being, but also to our national security? The day after Thanksgiving, our national debt hit $18,000,000,000,000 for the first time. It keeps going up, and this bill will dig our children and grandchildren even deeper into debt. It’s time we got serious about the fact that this growing debt endangers the future of our country.
Conservatives in Congress must be willing to speak out when they see a big government locomotive hurtling towards the American people. The CRomnibus, as it has been labeled, is such a disaster.
But to some extent, we have enabled that disaster by not holding the line on principle. Our elected leaders have given far too much away in the past for the sake of “leverage,” the vacuous idea that, somehow, if we give up on our principles today, we’ll be better positioned to do the right thing tomorrow. This has happened again and again, and we have grown frustrated waiting for our elected officials to do what they promise to do time and time again.
Our country, though, doesn’t have time to wait. We have to be willing to fight today to defend our Constitution, preserve our God-given rights, and restore the rule of law. God willing, we still have time to do so.