ADF

Tag Archives: 25

David Davenport: The Senate Is Broken


Former President James Buchanan called the United States Senate “the greatest deliberative body in the world.”  But Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana, recently complained that he hasn’t even been able to get a vote on a single legislative amendment in his first 15 months on the job.

The fact is that the U.S. Senate has largely quit deliberating.  The Senate has voted on only 6 non-budgetary amendments so far this year and has taken only 25 roll call votes in the two-year Congress, compared with 154 at this point in the last Congress.

Bills are held in secret until 51 votes are lined up and then sprung on the Senate.  Largely gone are the committee deliberations, debates and amendments.

Votes are taken largely to make statements for the next election, not to make great public policy.  It’s high time Congress returned to “regular order.”

Read More »

David Davenport: Questions About Walls


President Trump loves walls—besides a border wall with Mexico, he wants to erect trade walls to protect American steel and aluminum with tariffs of 25 and 10 percent, respectively.

In his famous poem about walls, Robert Frost said, “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,” adding that before he built one, “I’d ask to know what I was walling in or walling out, and to whom I was likely to give offence.” Those are good questions for Mr. Trump’s policy.

He wants to wall out foreign products that are cheaper than American products. But this will trouble not only nations that produce them, but also American consumers who like to save money.

There’s also a question of constitutionality, since the president’s power to do this is based on national security. And the biggest question:  will tariff walls even work in a global economy?

Many important questions about walls.

 

Read More »