Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Congress rams through a massive piece of legislation costing hundreds of billions of dollars without bothering to read it. Meet Congress under a Democratic majority—same as under the old majority.
Late Wednesday evening, congressional leaders still had not publicly released their omnibus appropriations legislation, and were not planning to do so until near midnight—hardly an auspicious time to embark on reading a bill exceeding 1,000 pages:
House Appropriations Chair @NitaLowey expected to file massive 1200-page bill, including $49B Homeland Security funding, on House floor between 1130pm-midnight, per source.
— John R Parkinson (@jparkABC) February 14, 2019
. . .
Of all things, Politico reported that one of the major holdups preventing an earlier public release included provisions having nothing to do with government spending—or, for that matter, border security:
“Congressional leaders are still haggling over an extension of the landmark Violence Against Women Act—one of the final hold-ups in a funding deal to avert a shutdown on Friday….One dispute centers on a Democratic push to add protections for transgender people, which the GOP is resisting; meanwhile, Republicans want more time to negotiate a broader deal, according to lawmakers and aides.”
And particularly in this case, Democrats find giving people time to read the bill inconvenient. Even though government funds won’t expire until Friday at midnight—and Congress could always extend that funding temporarily, to allow for more time to review the bill—both chambers want to vote on Thursday. Because heaven forbid Congress 1) do actual work on a Friday and 2) delay their “recess” (read: vacation) and their overseas trips during same. (Democratic leaders claimed their members have been “sufficiently briefed”—because it’s very easy to “brief” someone on most, let alone all, of the contents of a 1,200 page bill.) (Read more from “Congress To Vote On Yet Another Huge Spending Bill No One Has Read” HERE)