“House Ethics Committee” is a colossal oxymoron, is it not? It is somewhat absurd that the foxes (members of Congress) are guarding the henhouse (government integrity). That was probably the thinking when the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) was created to oversee and monitor the U.S. House.
Apparently, many constituents across the fruited plain did not believe that the House Ethics Committee was very ethical. It wasn’t doing its job (SHOCKING!), so perhaps an overseer might set things right. But many members of Congress felt that the OCE was somewhat ham-handed, spent too much money, and gave short shrift to due process when it alleged wrongdoing by lawmakers.
In a closed-door session Monday night, House Republicans voted to de-fang OCE, but by the time word got out early Tuesday, the press was going ballistic and even President-Elect Donald Trump Tweeted critical words against the proposal.
The GOP backed off on the proposal on Tuesday, but there is still a significant contingent of Republicans that want to revisit the issue. How tone deaf can these clowns be? When Donald Trump was elected with the promise of “Drain the Swamp;” when tens of millions of Americans are fed up with the lies and corruption that make Washington’s “DC” mean “dirty cesspool;” when Democrats and the news media are ready to pounce on everything the GOP does now that we have one-party rule…
To make this the first order of business after the holiday break is breathtakingly stupid. Or, as some like to say, “It takes a special kind of stupid.” Regrettably, the GOP often demonstrates thick-headed ineptitude in spades. If this is any indication of things to come, we could be in for an extremely disappointing legislative year. But somehow, I think there are enough common sense people in the incoming Trump administration, as well as a few level heads in Congress, to stop this asinine nonsense. Let us hope so.