Sen. Arlen Specter, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, last Monday delivered an unusually candid assessment of the Senate's notoriously light work schedule.Add in the fact that it now takes a super majority of 60 votes to get anything big passed or even debated and that a single senator can put a secret hold on bills or nominations then it is amazing that they accomplish anything. Why anyone would aspire to work in such an institution is beyond me. Sure, they can feel self-important and part of history or imagine themselves in the White House, but if you really wanted to do something to improve the country it must be a terribly demoralizing place to work. Perhaps, that explains why we get the representatives we do....
In a National Press Club luncheon speech, Specter noted it was "very hard to convene a Monday morning hearing" because of extended weekends. He continued: "We've fallen into a routine . . . of starting our workweek Tuesday at 2:15 after we finish our caucus luncheons, and people start to get edgy and heading for the airports early on Thursday. So we might increase the workweek by 50 percent, say, to three days."
Saturday, September 30, 2006
This might be one of the reasons that the Senate doesn't seem to get much done.
Posted by Betsy Newmark at 8:26 AM