Thursday, June 3, 2010


Bob RiesPress Release, Nashville, 6/3/2010.

Bob Ries, Candidate for Congress in the 5th District of Tennessee, is a Conservative seeking the nomination of the Republican Party. Ries says there is an easy way to eliminate wasteful spending and earmarks, while making it easier to force our representatives to read Bills before they vote on them.

He says there is a Constitutional way to eliminate wasteful spending, earmarks and also the need for a Line Item Veto. Congress simply needs to adopt the same rules of Parliamentary Procedure used by State Governments, Municipal Governments and almost every other Organization in this Nation (except our Federal Government): ROBERT’S RULES OF ORDER.

Robert’s Rules would require that every Bill have only one main idea. It could be amended no more than two times, and each Amendment must pertain to the main idea in the original Motion. Most Bills would require very few pages, would not require assistants to pour over thousands of pages, and every bill could be easily read and understood by our elected representatives, BEFORE THEY VOTE ON THE BILL.

There would be no superfluous projects contained in the Bill, since every main idea would need it’s own Bill to be passed by both Houses of Congress. Think about it. If someone wanted to spend taxpayer money on a bridge to nowhere, to study the sex life of albino tadpoles, to build a special building in some Representative’s District, or any other wasteful “pet” project, it must pass both Houses of Congress on it’s own merits.

I am confident that few Politicians would have the nerve to introduce some of these wasteful projects (included as almost hidden riders in the past) on their own separate Bills.

I propose The House and Representatives, and the Senate; adopt Robert’s Rules of Order for their Rules of Proceedings. Since Article 1, Section 5, Clause 2 of the Constitution states: “Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings”, this would not require a Constitutional Amendment, only a common sense agreement.

Comment: This is one of the brightest ideas I have seen come out of this campaign. It makes so much sense it will probably never be adopted, but I have no doubt that if Bob Ries is elected to Congress that he will fight for it. During my service in the metro council we had a council rule that the text of a bill could not be broader than the caption, thus if the bill was titled, "An act to authorize the purchase of police car radios," one could not amend it to fund expanded library hours. If congress was under the same rational restraints we would see a more frugal government.

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