WELCOMING A NEW CONGRESS
Posted by Tim Bryce on January 5, 2015
BRYCE ON POLITICS
– What to expect over the next two years.
As is customary, on the third day of January we installed a new Congress, the 114th to be exact. Now, for the first time since 2007, the Republicans control both chambers:
The Senate – 54 GOP – 46 Dems
The House of Representatives – 244 GOP – 188 Dems
The 2014 mid-term elections were generally considered a rebuff of President Obama’s policies which cost several Democratic Congressmen their seats. As Gallup reported, the Democratic Party has lost its luster and people today feel more aligned with Republicans, at least for the moment.
Somehow though I am reminded of the expression, “Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.” There is a lot on our plate and a lot of wrongs to be righted, for example:
The Budget and Debt
Defense and the War on Terror
Basically, Americans are not satisfied with the course our country is headed and the Republicans are presently looked upon as the voice of reason. However, they cannot afford to make any mistakes and will have to walk a tight rope with the 2016 presidential election in mind. To compound their problems, they will be placed under intense scrutiny by the main street media who will criticize the slightest hangnail. The Democrats will also dutifully try to derail the Republicans. It will all make for some rather interesting political theater.
To make this work, the Republicans must display a sense of solidarity and professionalism. It is imperative they demonstrate they possess the country’s overall best interests. Will they have all of the answers? Certainly not, but they must exhibit leadership and common sense which the public is yearning for. This is the key for winning in 2016.
Results will be the order of the day, something the public is starving for after four years of gridlock. Harry Reid may no longer be able to delay legislation in the Senate, but the president will likely veto anything that comes before him and will use any excuse to close the government. Although this has hurt the Republicans in the past, if the Congressional leaders play their cards right, it will now backfire on the president and likely assure a Republican president in the next election.
Although the economy is slowly coming around, our Gross Domestic Product is still at a paltry 3.9%, a far cry from what we are capable of doing, and business is impeded by a stifling high corporate tax rate (40%). We are also no closer to energy independence than we were six years ago which keeps us embroiled in military conflict in the Middle East. And I cannot think of anything more divisive to public opinion than our immigration policies. It would also be nice to see us manage within our means and balance the budget, thereby helping to reduce the debt.
These problems are so massive and complicated, the Congress will probably not be able to scratch the surface, particularly facing opposition from the White House. The fact remains though, we have to start somewhere and it will be a difficult journey, but we have to start.
As always, Congressmen will be asked to take the oath of office:
“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.”
To me, it is comforting to note the importance of the Constitution and God in the oath. If our Congressmen can ever be mindful of it, we might just be able to get a few things done.
Now let’s get to work.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
For Tim’s columns, see: timbryce.com
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Copyright © 2015 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.
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