Emmett Tyrrell
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WASHINGTON -- I have one question about the way Majority Leader Harry Reid has been conducting the Senate. Has he committed a felony or a mere misdemeanor?

The wags will say that a politician from Nevada does not commit misdemeanors, but I am in earnest. The difference between whether Dingy Harry -- as he is known by the eminent political scientist Dr. Rush Limbaugh -- shuffles off to a federal prison or merely pays a hefty fine is significant. I suppose we can leave it to the federal prosecutors to decide, but if he gets off on a misdemeanor I urge it also entail mandatory budget counseling. No one would be surprised to hear of Harry being sentenced to a stint at anger management counseling. Why not mandatory budget counseling too?

Majority Leader Harry's transgression is that for over 1300 days, he has failed to pass a budget. In fact, there is no evidence he has even tried. This is against the law. Federal law clearly requires the Congress to pass a budget every year. I presume the reasoning behind this is that the American people deserve to know where their taxes are going. Putting it another way, why are the American people being mulcted every year by the Internal Revenue Service to pay for Harry and his gang's criminal activities? What are their activities? Are they buying votes with public moneys? Are they favoring friends with subsidies and other extensions of the people's treasure? What about lucre they have extended for "renewable energy," for automobiles no one wants, for every idiot enthusiasm of the so-called welfare state.

For over 1300 days, Harry has been operating his scam without a budget. The House of Representatives has passed budgets in accordance with the law. They have been designed by the law-abiding chairman of the House Budget Committee, Paul Ryan. He has braved obloquy from Democrats and other ideologues for putting down on paper what he would spend federal money on and where the citizenry's taxes are going. Harry has not, and according to the law he ought to go to jail or be otherwise punished. Surely we do not make laws without punishments, do we?

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Emmett Tyrrell

R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor in chief of The American Spectator and co-author of Madame Hillary: The Dark Road to the White House.
 
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