The lame duck session of Congress began yesterday, with the Democrats having their last opportunity to control both houses of Congress and get something done, before the Republicans take over the House of Representatives in January!
There is much that needs to be addressed, including:
1. The question of the Bush tax cuts, which if extended to the top two percent of the country, will put America in the hole for $700 billion over the next ten years, worsening the national debt tremendously!
2. Funding of the national government for the present budget year which began in October.
3. Restoration of Medicare payments to doctors at a rate that will keep them willing to accept Medicare patients.
4. Dealing with the issue of unemployment compensation extension to long term unemployed people who will have no income if it is not extended.
5. Passage of the DREAM Act, which would allow children of illegal immigrants who have grown up in this country to have the possibility of attending college or entering the military and avoid deportation to countries they have no memory of, since they left those nations when infants.
6. Abolition of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in the military, an issue which has been dragged around for two years now, but must be repealed by Congress if discrimination is to end for gays.
The problem is that much of this agenda is unlikely to pass other than the first two items, as the GOP has the ability to stall and filibuster everything else, a very frustrating potential scenario! 🙁
Hopefully, there will be progress on the last four topics, but with a turnover to the GOP in the House in January, it is clear that if these issues listed above are not resolved now, they may never be in the next two years! 🙁