Saturday, December 09, 2006

5 Day Work Week UNFAIR!!!

The Democrats in Congress plan to do the people's work, including adequate oversight of the Executive Branch. This means that Congress will be session 5 days a week from Monday afternoon to Friday morning. Under my timekeeping, that's technically only 4 days of work, but it sure beats what the GOP Congress has done. This year, the GOP Congress met only 103 days, and the federal government is STILL being run by a "continuing resolution" (i.e. "do what you did last year, minus the earmarks") and will be run by one until at least February 15. These jokers have met fewer days than the infamous "do nothing" Congress of 1947-48.

All this "work" by the GOP earns them $165,000 a year, official junkets, and lobbyists slobbering all over them to give them free stuff. They only met from late Tuesday afternoon to midday Thursday....if they met at all. For most of us, holidays mean an extra day off work. Not so for Congress. One day for mere citizens equates to at least a week for Congress. The Democrats, rightly, are putting a stop to it. And the GOP isn't happy.

Jack Kingston (R-Savannah) seems to have been nominated to be official whiner for the GOP caucus. In a fit of hysteria, Kingston told the Washington Post, "Keeping us up here eats away at families. Marriages suffer. The Democrats could care less about families — that's what this says."

Yes, that's exactly what this says. Democrats are elected to public office, and they have the audicity to believe that they should put in an honest work week on behalf of the people who elected them. Mind you, Kingston is a guy who sleeps in his damn office to show how "fiscally conservative" he is. Many Congresspeople share living quarters to cut down expenses. Senators usually move their families since their terms are 6 years. Of course, many Congressmen do too.

It's Jack Kingston's problem if his wife refuses to leave the confines of the greater Savannah area. You would think that after 14 years in Congress, they would have discussed living arrangements that would look after the well-being of their family. Apparently, since 12 of those years were spent with the GOP in control, ol' Jack didn't have to worry about it since he only had to show up for a day and a half in DC.

I have no idea how our fragile Republic survived all those years before the advent of air travel, telephone, and the internet. Why, a Congressman would have to stay in town for an entire session, staying in touch only through snail mail! The HORROR! Of course, back then, our government was less complex and only needed to meet maybe 6 months every two years. Congress is a full time legislature, and it needs to be full time. If you don't like that, then don't run. If Jack can't hack the new schedule, he can feel free to resign so that someone who is willing to work for people of GA-1 can actually elect someone who will gladly do the work he/she asked to do.

wrote in today's AJC that "last year I hosted 25 town hall meetings regarding Medicare Part D. The year before that, I held 17 town hall meetings on Social Security. In addition, I made over 200 speeches and meetings with veteran groups, farmers, energy, tax, health care, education and environmental groups. And I met with many individuals who had problems with the federal government — people who don't have business cards and don't know doctors and lawyers personally. These are the people who don't have the lobbyists, the time, or the budgets that would allow them to come to Washington and meet with me." Wow, he had meetings in his district 25 times in a calendar year! That's every other weekend. I don't know where he gets the energy to keep up that schedule!

Being a Representative or Senator to Congress is not supposed to be easy. If you have to spend your workweek in DC and commute home on the weekends, so be it. And if you truly care about your district, you will find ways to stay in touch and not lose the pulse of the people.

Jack Kingston and his GOP whiners don't understand that.

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