Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Election? We Don't Need No Steenking Election!

Apparently members of the Senate haven't been reading the literature produced by their near neighbor, the United States Supreme Court. This Reuters article discusses the fact that both Democrat and Republican members of the United States Senate are in agreement that a convicted felon should not be permitted to take a seat in the Senate. According to Powell v. McCormack, a chamber of Congress lacks the power to refuse to seat a duly elected member who satisfies the age, citizenship, and residence requirements articulated in the Constitution.

Presumably they will seat him -- then promptly conduct proceedings to expel him. Of course, if they do this too quickly, the Senate could embarrass itself if his still-pending appeal succeeds in overturning his conviction.

Bah! What am I saying? A member of Congress, capable of being embarrassed?

Shameless, the lot of them. The fact a mere felony should cause members of Congress to be up in arms over one of their member is silly: Mark Twain explained Congress was America's only distinctly native American criminal class. Felony is part of the initiation ritual, I'm sure.

Maybe his sin was getting caught. But, no: members of Congress have been repeatedly spotted doing terrible things -- sometimes, with the vote of their offices -- with no ill effects.

Why not let this felon join their exalted ranks? A convicted felon in Congress would be something new for that august body: truth in advertising.

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