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Archaic system serves its constituents poorly

I recently watched the C-SPAN channel, listening to speaker after speaker. Each one spoke of various topics, such as gigantic increases in flood insurance premiums for people and businesses, as well as the disparity of the poor in the United States, and the need (or no need) to extend unemployment insurance. All of this talking seemed like such a waste of time. It appeared that of the 435 voting members, there were few listening to each speaker. With the limited peripheral view behind each speaker, all of the seats were empty. I would venture a guess that if the speaker was a Democrat, all of the Republicans were out of the chamber. And vice-versa if a Republican was the speaker. I would also guess that members had a list of the order of speakers on the agenda so they could pick and choose.

This process borders on the archaic. The speakers usually spoke from a prepared text. They all seemed to be talking to hear their own voice, and to feel important so that they could brag to their constituents about how many times they spoke on the chamber floor.

All members of the House owe a duty to their constituents to listen to all speakers, and to do what’s right for the country and not just their political party. Some changes are in order. Why not place speakers outside the House chamber in halls, bathrooms and offices? After all, a Republican or Democrat does not want to be seen listening to the opposition in the chamber. Also, it could be effective to have each member’s staff send out texts or emails to all members to get across their message. This is the electronic age. Lastly, require one-half to two-thirds of each party to be in attendance.

Joseph Borzelliere

East Amherst