One leaks mess we can fix
The proliferation of Washington leaks remains a serious problem. But bipartisan congressional action could solve the problem.
Well, at least it could repair the roughly 1,300 cracks in the dome of the Capitol.
Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., has been urging House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, to expedite $61 million in funding needed for that overdue mission. The money has apparently been held up under last month’s stopgap budget compromise, which continued federal agency spending at levels only moderately above last year’s numbers.
Sen. Schumer, chair of the Senate committee that oversees the Capitol Complex, warned Monday that the holes in the dome were making it dangerous for those who work in — or even visit — the building.
He delivered this urgent plea: “There is a time and a place to debate federal spending and the proper role of government, but most Americans believe that when your house has a leaky roof, you pay to fix the roof. The Capitol’s dome is a monument to our nation’s representative democracy. It would be a national embarrassment if partisan gridlock allowed this iconic work of architecture to fall into a state of permanent decay.”
Kevin Smith, Rep. Boehner’s spokesman, dismissed the senator’s concerns as overwrought: “The speaker is confident we can work together to fix the Capitol dome without more political posturing from Sen. Schumer.”
And Americans of all political persuasions should be confident that an operation already nearly $16 trillion in debt — your federal government — won’t go under due to another relatively scant $61 million expense.
But please, don’t invest any time in the expectation that elected officials will refrain from political posturing — especially during an election year.