I feel like Bill Murray in “Groundhog
Day,” waking up in
the 27th straight
day to “I Got You
Babe.” The elections are over yet it
looks like they never occurred.
The lame duck session is about to
commence, but it really isn’t a lame
duck. The ratios and control of Con-
gress won’t change when the new
Congress is sworn in in January. Why
even bother having a lame duck? “Ya’ll
just stay home and save some taxpayer
money. We can pick up where we left
off any time.”
I am in a very bad mood.
It started the morning after the election as I sat at my desk reviewing the details of what happened the day before.
Let me clarify that my sour disposition
had nothing to do with the outcome of
any specific race, presidential or otherwise. I don’t deal the cards around here;
I just play the hand dealt to me.
But after roughly $6 billion in campaign ads force fed to us like we were
a foie gras goose (remember the viral
video of the little girl crying because
she was tired of hearing about Romney
and “Bronco Bama”?), it’s damn frustrating to see that we have fundamentally the same leaders in our government dealing with the same problems
AFTER ROUGHLY $6 BILLION IN CAMPAIGN
ADS, IT’S DAMN FRUSTRATING TO SEE THAT
WE HAVE FUNDAMENTALLY THE SAME LEADERS
IN OUR GOVERNMENT DEALING WITH THE
SAME PROBLEMS THEY WERE INCAPABLE OF
SOLVING OVER THE PAST FOUR YEARS.
they were incapable of solving over the
past four years of gridlock.
And that starts with the fiscal cliff.
Same players, same positions. President
Obama has already said that he ran on
raising taxes on the “wealthy” and that
the election was a mandate for his position. Speaker Boehner responded that
Republicans ran in opposition to “class
warfare” and that by retaining control
of the House they received a mandate
to stand firm.
They are both correct. Why should
either side blink? We sent them both
the same message and gave them the
confidence to dig in.
As I sat at my desk on November 7,
my phone rang at 9: 38 am. Mere hours
after the polls had closed, a cheery
young lady invited me to a fundrais-ing breakfast for a congressman’s 2014
re-election campaign. And that’s when
the depression set in. Because despite
the “are you kidding me” outrageous-
ness of her call, it really didn’t surprise
me. Indeed, shoulders slumped, I let
out a heavy sigh and accepted her invitation.
Apparently, this is the way the American voter wants it to be. The election
changed nothing, and we are back at it
all over again. Based on Einstein’s definition of insanity — “Doing the same
thing over and over and expecting different results” — it looks to me like we
are all crazy.
From Capitol Hill,
Lyle Beckwith is the NACS senior vice
president of government relations. He
can be reached at (703) 518-4220 or