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President's Ponderings: Why Not Pass It?

By Edward Luttrell - President's Ponderings Blog (6/3/11)

  JUNE 4, 2011 --

Yesterday I was listening to the news on the radio and heard an interview with a State Representative. The Representative was being question by a well-respected and experienced reporter about a bill that was stalled in the legislature. The bill was to ban a certain chemical in the production of items such as baby bottles.

The Representative explained that the reason she was opposing the bill was that she had gone to a number of different stores and bought many of the items covered by the bill and found that market forces had already dealt with the issue. It seems that moms still have power, since most, if not all, of the products were advertising that they are free of that chemical. She added that she had a barrel full of these products in her office to demonstrate her findings.

The reporter then asked her why if there wasn’t a problem, what would it hurt to pass the bill into law? 

At that point my blood pressure went up! I don’t think we elect people to just pass bills. There are enough unintended consequences to laws that we need, and I can’t see the point in making new laws just to feel good about something. 

I applaud the elected officials who vote against bills that are not needed and then stand up and explain their vote. I wish more of our elected officials would publicly explain their positions and not hide their position or blame the other guy.

Our American system of government is not supposed to be about passing a bill about every issue that someone thinks is important; it is about our elected representatives dealing with the issues that affect us at the local, state or federal level.

I am still fuming a bit at that particular reporter. I think it may be time for a refresher course in civics for someone.

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