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Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Breach of contract?

The Globe continues to impress this new reader.

On Monday, the paper ran a story about the fate of the "Contract with America," 10 years after the Gingrich revolution created a Republican-controlled House of Representatives.
But after 10 years of Republican control of the House, members of the majority party appear to have strayed from some of the promises that got them there. The nation is running up record budget deficits, term-limit pledges are being jettisoned, and House Republicans voted last week to weaken the ethics-enforcement process in Congress.
The story includes quotes from quite a few Republicans who are unhappy with ballooning deficits, newly lowered ethical standards, etc.

Here's my favorite quote, which is buried near the end of the article:
Republicans have altered House rules to limit debate and increased the number of bills presented to members without allowing any changes -- a practice for which the GOP excoriated the Democrats in 1994.

''It's exactly the abuse of authority and process that Republicans criticized the Democrats for doing when they were in power," said Thomas J. Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, a conservative advocacy organization. ''There is a certain arrogance of power, and some Republicans convince themselves that because they have the right views, their methodology will always be correct."
30 of the 73 Republicans newly elected to the House in 1994 remain in that body. Many promised to leave after 3, 4 or 5 terms. The nonbinding resolution associated with the Contract called for House members to limit themselves to 3 terms.

The 30 remaining members of the class of '94 have been in breach since January 2001.

Oh, and a lot of the other 43 members are serving in other elected governmental posts, so it is not as if they returned to "mere" citizen status.

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