Archive for the ‘Government’ Category

The Tortured Path to a Common Sense Education Policy


By John Feehery

No Child Left Behind Act.jpg

“No Child Left Behind Act”. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Thomas Jefferson was a big proponent of public education.

He once said,

Educate and inform the whole mass of the people… They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.

John Adams was of a like mind. 

Laws for the liberal education of youth, especially for the lower classes of people, are so extremely wise and useful that to a humane and generous mind, no expense for this purpose would be thought extravagant.




By John Feehery

United States Capitol west front edit2.jpg

“United States Capitol west front edit2″ by United_States_Capitol_-_west_front.jpg: Architect of the Capitol derivative work: O.J. – United_States_Capitol_-_west_front.jpg. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

We are a world that needs self-imposed deadlines to make things happen.

A deadline used to be critical for the newspaper business. If you didn’t file your copy by a certain time, you wouldn’t make the paper.

Deadlines were also used in prison yards. If you crossed a certain line that got too close to the fence, you were shot dead.

Diplomats are feverishly working on a couple deadlines in Europe. (more…)

Avoiding Another Omnibus


By John Feehery

Obama meets with Congressional Leadership July 2011 cropped.jpg

“Obama meets with Congressional Leadership July 2011 cropped” by Official White House Photo by Pete Souza – (Photograph 4 of 20). Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

President Barack Obama worked closely with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to pass trade promotion authority, also known as fast track, before the Memorial Day recess in the Senate.

And he worked closely with Speaker John Boehner to pass a sharply limited update to the Patriot Act in the House.

Can this bipartisan cooperation continue into the summer? More specifically, can the White House and Congress come to some agreement on how to keep the government funded when the fiscal year ends in October? (more…)



By John Feehery

Fred Upton 113th Congress.jpg

“Fred Upton 113th Congress” by United States Congress – [ U.S. Government Printing Office. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Unless you are naming a post office, it’s not easy getting a House Committee to vote unanimously for any single piece of legislation.

Sure it happens from time to time, but making laws is a messy business, and except for the most non-controversial of issues, getting everybody on the same page for significant legislation is pretty rare. (more…)

Amtrak: Status Quo is Not Acceptable


By John Feehery

Amtrak - GE P42DC - Heritage Phase III Livery.JPG

“Amtrak – GE P42DC – Heritage Phase III Livery” by Braniff747SP – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Mike Simpson was right, of course.

The Idaho Republican told the Appropriations Committee Democrats that their efforts to politicize the Amtrak train crash were inappropriate and out of order.

We don’t know what caused the horrific crash. We don’t know if it was engineer error, sabotage, equipment malfunction or just system incompetence.

Unfortunately, Republicans made it easy for the Democrats to demagogue the issue. (more…)


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