The unwritten rules of congress

The past year in Congress has been one of the most aggravating and generally excruciating years that I have ever witnessed.Most of my strife and hair-pulling can be directly attributed to the “unwritten rules” and juvenile arguing techniques used in Congress.  Filibustering is a technique that the minority party often uses to stop a vote on a bill. They do this by literally talking until the other party cannot stand it and leaves.The only way to stop this technique is to get 60 votes in a move called cloture. Ironically, this frequented tool is not mentioned in the Constitution or any other law. In essence, Congress has provided the means for a minority to set much more of the agenda then they are entitled to. These childish guidelines make it seem as though Congress is being run more like a game of beer pong with “house rules” than a legislature. Today these rules have destroyed all sense of cordiality and have created a new lose-lose policy that has been drowning both parties. Both Democrats and Republicans have decided that they will not only vote against any bill sponsored by the opposite party, they will do everything in their power to fight action by that party.It comes as no surprise that even though the Democrats have their largest majority in 40 years, they still have trouble passing bills.This system of gridlock is sickening because it shows that the congressmen and women clearly care more about being right than advancing the solutions to problems.The representatives have degenerated from public servants into campaign slogan slingers doing only what will get them elected again.Now here is the dilemma. Who tells Congress, the highest power in the country, to play nice? President Obama has tried desperately in the State of the Union and several other addresses to ask for cooperation between the parties. He has acted as the adult in the room in several situations, but even his parental tone has not moved the parties. I fear that if Congress does not stop fighting itself, the United States will not be prepared to continue to face the challenges that have risen in the past decade. This issue is not just about cooperation; it is about national security, health care, education and foreign policy. Congress needs to cooperate, not because someone has to win the argument, but because the country needs all the help and new ideas it can get.