John Conyers must have thought he provided the ultimate beat-down to people who strangely insist that lawmakers should actually read legislation before it passes. Unfortunately for Conyers, all he did was prove that (a) he’s been in Congress far too long, and (b) Democratic leadership and the White House are rushing legislation when everyone should take their time to understand it. CNS’ Nicholas Ballasy reports:
During his speech at a National Press Club luncheon, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Democratic Congressman John Conyers (D-Mich.), questioned the point of lawmakers reading the health care bill.
“I love these members, they get up and say, ‘Read the bill,’” said Conyers.
“What good is reading the bill if it’s a thousand pages and you don’t have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you read the bill?”
Of course, the answer to that is — what’s the freaking rush? Why not take two days and a couple of lawyers from your staff to figure out what’s in the bill before you pass it into law, Rep. Conyers? Representative democracy rests on having the people send Congressmen and Senators to Washington DC to vote on legislation so that we don’t have to hold constant national referendums on issues. If the elected representatives don’t bother to read the legislation, then we have surrendered representative democracy and adopted an autocracy of Capitol Hill staffers and lobbyists.
It may be difficult to find anyone as clueless as John Conyers in this clip. In fact, one has to go back 30 years and enter the world of comedy to come close to it. Behold one of the greatest moments in sitcom history, teaching a lesson that Conyers and his colleagues should well heed: Slow down.