Boyd Matheson: Mike Pence could save the Senate from deliberative death

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  • robin138 springfield, VA
    Feb. 10, 2019 11:34 a.m.

    Matheson is advocating that the Executive Branch control one of the Houses of the Legislative Branch. That is not what is meant by separation of powers.

  • Misty Mountain Kent, WA
    Feb. 10, 2019 9:10 a.m.

    @Esquire wrote,

    "Matheson should know better than to write this nonsense."

    That's an understatement.

    If the vice president had some legal power to force legislation to be voted on in the Senate, then it is obvious that Joe Biden would have forced the vote on Merrick Garland back in 2016. But he doesn't. To make it worse, McConnell has not an ounce of integrity, and Pence does not have much more. Pence sits in office, with a plastic smile on his face, waiting out Trump's term(s) without doing a thing which might upset the Trump base, in the hopes of becoming president when Trump exits.

  • Fabulous Jen Eagle Mountain, UT
    Feb. 10, 2019 8:42 a.m.

    Pence taking a more active role in government besides sitting like a dime-store mannequin next to Trump gazing at him with fawning adoration is a scary thought!

  • Thomas Thompson Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 10, 2019 7:37 a.m.

    The author is entirely mistaken about what the Vice-President "could do." Things in the Senate are happening exactly as the Republican majority wants -- and there's nothing that any amount of so called "Democratic obstruction" could do about that, for the simple reason that they don't have the votes. Thus, it is the Republican senators and the Republican committee chairs that determine everything that happens or doesn't happen. It is thus understandable that many bills proposed in the House never come to a vote in the Senate at all. The Republicans (at least in theory) hold fast to this view: "that government is best which governs least," so they'll never be in a hurry to enact new laws unless those proposals inure to the benefit of their "campaign contributors." Pence cannot force his will on the Senate precisely because there are things that the administration wants the Senate to do, and the Senate will do none of them if they see VP Pence as some kind of glorified hatched man for Trump's agenda. More than anything else, they want Mr. Trump to learn that they, too, have agendas that need support. Right now, it's support they're not getting.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Feb. 8, 2019 8:42 a.m.

    Matheson is in some sort of fantasy here. He should know better. McConnell is the cause of Senate dysfunction, and he rules with an iron fist. Pence isn't going to change that, nor does Pence have the strength, gravitas or political power to do it. Matheson should know better than to write this nonsense.

  • Something to think about Ogden, UT
    Feb. 7, 2019 3:45 p.m.

    The reality of it is...

    Mitch McConnell doesn't trust his own party to follow the Trump line. If he allows votes on important and meaningful issues, Trump might have to veto the bill. Then McConnell would be forced to attempt an override, which I believe on many such issues, the GOP would support.

    Trump does not represent enough of the traditional GOP ideals, yet the GOP members in Congress subject themselves to him. They've abandoned many principles in an effort to keep Trump from looking foolish.

    I wish they would simply congratulate the 'Emperor on his new clothes' and move forward.

  • RickBob Paducah, KY
    Feb. 7, 2019 3:28 p.m.

    Mitch is my senator. I voted for him countless times to keep the GOP in control of the Senate. No more. If he'd lost his last race, the GOP would have still held the majority, but Mitch would have been gone. Term limits are need to get of the likes of Shumer. McConnell. And Pelosi.

  • Jamchild Centerville, UT
    Feb. 7, 2019 2:14 p.m.

    I'm truly interested in how you consider Chuck Schumer to be in collusion with Mitch McConnell on holding bills up from going to a vote. This is not well spelled out in your article, as far as I can tell because it's wishful thinking and not true. Seems to me this is squarely in McConnell's court - he's the only one with power to bring bills up for a vote, no? Am I missing something?

  • Impartial7 DRAPER, UT
    Feb. 7, 2019 12:28 p.m.

    "During the first two years of the Trump administration, with Republicans in control of both chambers of Congress, more than 76 percent of the bills passed by the House received no action in the Senate."

    Yeah, because McConnell was playing God on which bills, most backed by the GOP majority in the House, as well as Republican voters, would see the light of day. But, expecting Pence, whom sits stoically idle while Trump acts against just about every christian value Pence purports to honor, to act now, is dreaming. Trump says jump and Pence asks how high. No matter the issue or the falsehood.