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Sunday, December 23, 2012

Deliberation on the Cliff

The looming fiscal cliff has not been a high point for deliberation in  Congress. The Palladium-Item quotes Rajaram Krishnan, professor of economics at Earlham College:
Krishnan said the current negotiations are like the last two minutes of a football game, not a thoughtful deliberation.

“As an academic, as an economist, I want ideas discussed,” he said. “It’s time to pull these debates out of the bumper sticker world.”
The economists agree Congress has a lot of serious work to do.
“The politics has subsumed good government,” Krishnan said.

CNN reports on an interview with Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA), who discusses bicameralism, the separation of powers, and deliberation:
McClintock found fault with the process of legislating in Washington. He said Obama meddled too early and should have waited for the House and Senate to work out the details first.
“Bad process creates bad policy,” he said. “The deliberative process is supposed to be continued independently within the two houses. The House and the Senate are supposed to act independently of each other.”
“When each house then comes to its own independent judgment about the course of action, then we've got a conference process that's very good at resolving the differences between the two houses,” he continued.
“Only then is the president brought into the process. What we've got now is a couple of legislative leaders sitting behind closed doors coming up with plans that they then drop in the laps of both houses of the Congress for a take it or leave it vote. That doesn't end well,” McClintock said.