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Is Congress Living up to its Responsibilities and Authorities

Updated on October 12, 2018


Congress has many responsibilities related to the authority given it by the Constitution. These responsibilities are clearly defined in the Constitution and yet Congress seems to have overstepped its bounds with regards to ensuring the needs of the country and all citizens. Living up to its responsibilities Congress has its work cut out. There is much going on in our country and around the world. Often we only hear in the media the things that Congress is not doing but nothing about the things it has accomplished. The political culture in Congress these days adds to this situation.

Overall Congress does not have a favorable rating with the general public based on their actions or inactions. There is always much work to be done each legislative session and both political parties must work together to address issues facing the country such as security among others. Each election year we as voters must decide who to send back to Congress and who should be replaced. We hear negative ads from both sides of the political spectrum and we must sort out fact from fiction.

We have certain rights given to us under the Constitution many of which are included in the Bill of Rights but protecting these rights through legislative efforts has been a problem. Much legislative action is processed each legislative session and sometimes unintentional consequences occur through these actions and must be corrected.

We may not always agree with the actions and decisions made by our elected officials but often they have information that is not accessible by us the general public. As we vote this election year 2018 we must ask ourselves if the performance of the individuals that are up for election have been professional in their actions and decisions. Our elected officials and even some appointed officials work for us. Congress has the responsibility to keep tabs on the actions of each executive department and their agencies.

This has been a problem in the past and it is hoped that more oversight is accomplished by Congress on the executive department.

We have three branches of government which our wise founding fathers put into our Constitution. No one department is above the law and it is the responsibility of Congress to ensure the rights of all of us are not violated through rules and regulations. Part of this oversight involves ensuring the rules and regulations comply with the laws on the books. In some cases the laws are vague and hard to understand and this is the fault of Congress.

Congress is failing to write laws that are easy to understand by us the voters and the executive departments and agencies. While there may be gray areas where states and the federal government have dual responsibilities but creating clear language in the laws let each know where they stand and their responsibilities to get things accomplished.

There are good people on both sides of the isle trying to do the business of the people but political agendas have gotten in the way of the business of the country. Each branch of government has distinct responsibilities and authority and all branches must not interfere with the actions being taken by each branch when they clearly have the authority and responsibility to make them.

Another point to make is there are too many laws being created each year which do not provide enough time to review legislative proposals before our elected officials vote. There are certain actions which must be taken each year regarding funding the government but often I believe the laws passed each year are a Band-Aid on the real issue (s). What needs to occur is that issues need to be resolved once and for all where applicable through legislation. If this culture were to put in place it would make for a better functioning government, especially Congress and the same issues would not surface each legislative session. This would provide more time to tackle important issues that surface. Critical issues are facing our country what seems to be on a daily basis.

Much of the action of Congress has been about making decisions for us the voters and not letting us make our own decisions. Laws in the past have exceeded their justification as identified in the Constitution. This must change. The federal government has been too much of a dictatorial organization. We do need the federal government but mainly as a support function. This was the intent of our founding fathers. In some cases it is the responsibility of Congress to make laws which turn into rules and regulations to provide consistency on the issues. Congress must be careful to not make decisions for which the states have the authority and responsibility to make. Both political parties must look at the content of proposals for their merit and justification on the topics to be addressed not which political party has created it. Along with the merit and justification these proposals must be reviewed to determine if the approach and decisions are the right thing for the country and every citizen. They must or should reference the area (s) of the Constitution that gives Congress the authority to take the action being proposed.


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