House Republicans have been busy being fitted for foam Lady Liberty headwear and parlor hats made of dangling teabags. And now they have introduced hundreds of silly amendments to their own H.R. 1, the Continuing Resolution to fund the government for the next seven months. Illinois Democratic Rep. Jan Schakowsky and her staff saved you and me a lot of time by leafing through the House GOP's cynical hit list, coming up with these 10 truly stupid amendments proposed by actual Republican House members, all of whom purportedly claim to be actual adults. She calls it the 'So Be It' Awards:
1. Amendment Nos. 150 / 151 -- Rep. Neugebauer (R-TX): The amendment would prohibit funds made available in this Act from being used for repair, alteration, or improvement of the Executive Residence at the White House and the Executive Office of the President.
2. Amendment No. 8 -- Rep. Stearns (R-FL): The amendment would restrict funds made available in this Act from being used for the design, renovation, construction, or rental of any headquarters for the United Nations in any location in the United States.
3. Amendment No. 34 -- Rep. Garret (R-NJ): The amendment reduces funding for the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities, National Endowment for the Arts, Grants and Administration by $145 million eliminating funding for the account.
4. Amendment No. 271 -- Rep. King (R-IA): The amendment would reduce funding for the Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Disease Control, Research, and Training by $750,000,000. (Amendment Nos. 550 / 551 -- Rep. King (R-IA) do the same.)
5. Amendment No. 420 -- Rep. Issa (R-CA): The amendment would prohibit the funds made available by this Act from being used by the Department of Health and Human Services to study condom use skills in adult males.
6. Amendment No. 405 -- Rep. Thompson (R-PA): The amendment would amend the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to provide that payments made for standard power wheelchairs furnished in 2011 are subject to a 1 percent reduction in the covered item update made under the Social Security Act.
7. Amendment No. 422 -- Rep. Issa (R-CA): The amendment would prohibit the funds made available by this Act from being used by the National Science Foundation to study whether video games improve mental health for the elderly.
8. Amendment No. 346 -- Rep. Pearce (R-NM): The amendment would prohibit any funds made available under the Act to be used to provide trade adjustment assistance to wild blueberry producers.
9. Amendment No. 483 -- Rep. Fortenberry (R-NE): The amendment would prohibit funds made available by this Act to be used for or in sterilization campaigns.
10. Amendment No. 92 -- Rep. Heller (R-NV): The amendment would prohibit any funds made available in this Act from being used to designate monuments under the "Antiquities Act of 1906" (16 U.S.C. 431, et seq.). (Amendment No. 203 -- Rep. Labrador (R-ID) does the same thing.)
And a special mention goes to Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA): The Flintstone Car and Candlelight Award for his series of amendments to prohibit funding for an expansive list of energy innovations and clean technologies, including Water Power (Amendment No. 318), Wind Energy (Amendment No. 320), Vehicle Technologies (Amendment No. 316), Solar Energy (Amendment No. 314), Industrial Technologies (Amendment No. 312), Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies (Amendment No. 309), Geothermal (Amendment No. 307), Building Technologies (Amendment No. 302) and Biomass and Biorefining Systems (Amendment No. 300).
The last time I checked, John Boehner said his House members' focus was on "jobs, jobs, jobs." It seems to me they are spending most of their time reigniting the culture war and wasting time on idiotic amendments, as Rep. Schakowsky pointed out above.
Earlier this week, Boehner shrugged off concerns over job losses that would surely result from the $61 billion his chamber wants to slash from government programs.
"So be it," the Bronze One replied.
This is your country.