After a long fight, yesterday the U.S. Senate passed a massive bill meant to ensure the safety of the nation’s food supply (although critics point to some glaring shortcomings). And as we learned through our inadvertent teacher on politics, U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, putting a food bill together is a little like making sausage. In other words, a whole bunch of stuff you don’t want to know about goes into the final product.
As the Colorado Democrat groaned about the process of passing such a major bill, a microphone that was supposed to be turned off picked up his voice. “This is nothing because, because it’s all rigged,” Bennet said (via CBS4). “I mean the whole conversation is rigged. The conversation, the fact that we don’t get a discussion before the break about what we’re going to do in the lame duck is just rigged. This stuff’s rigged.”
Bennet’s office immediately rushed to elaborate, including Bennet aide Adam Bozzi: “For almost two years, he has talked about needing to fix a broken Washington. We can’t move forward on major issues facing our country because of a broken system that is rigged to prevent progress. We are now in the second week of this session and haven’t begun debating defense authorization or tax cuts that will expire at the end of the year” (via MSNBC).
Meanwhile, Gawker finds Bennet’s remarks refreshing: “Exactly! Why do Democrats come guns-blazing into a legislative session with soaring rhetoric about middle-class-only tax cuts, repealing ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ passing the DREAM Act, etc., without preparing a solid plan for how they’ll get these things through the Senate? Maybe a simple headcount on various issues before the legislative session begins would help, so then the whole plan, which your base is starting to get excited about, wouldn’t start crumbling vote-by-vote within five seconds of the opening gavel.”