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Senate Passes “The ______Act of____”—No Foolin’!

What a mess the Senate has made of H.R. 1586. It’s a package of spending and revenue measures—but we’ll ignore the substance for now because they have so utterly goofed up the name.

As we noted here before, this is a “shell bill.” It was introduced as one thing (TARP taxes), became another thing (an aviation bill), and is now a batch of spending policies. (Cost: about $125 per family)

snafuThe most recent version of the bill was produced when the Senate passed a “substitute amendment.” That’s an amendment that clips out everything in the bill and puts in all new text.

In the House and Senate, they often publish amendments ahead of time, and it looks like someone was in a rush to get the amendment together, because they left blank lines where the new name of the bill should have been.

Take a look for yourself. Down toward the bottom of this page in the Congressional Record, it says, “SECTION 1. This Act may be cited as the “_______Act of______”. (The Library of Congress’ Thomas reporting system picked that up as the “XXXXXXAct ofXXXX,” so that’s how it shows up on our site.)

Well, THAT’s the amendment they brought up and passed, so the new name of the bill is the “_______Act of______.”

oopsAnd that’s the way it might be signed into law.

You see, the Constitution requires both Houses of Congress to pass identical bills before they can be sent to the president and signed into law. The Senate has left town for the rest of August, and the House is coming back next week to put its stamp of approval on the bill.

President Obama wants to sign it quickly—the bill is already up on the Whitehouse.gov “pending legislation” page (though posting it there before the bill passes Congress doesn’t count as Sunlight Before Signing). So the House has to approve this bill, with the name “_______Act of______.”

The only other alternative is for the House to change the name and have the Senate come back for another vote.

Congress seems always to be hustling to get things done—even when it’s spending billions of taxpayer dollars. This time, they were hustling so fast to get the money moving that they couldn’t take the time to give the bill a proper name.

Whose problem is this? Yours! You voted these folks in!

Visitor Comments for Senate Passes “The ______Act of____”—No Foolin’! RSS 2.0

Web watchdog spots unusual congressional gaffe | HiTech Dot Com

[...] seems always to be hurrying,” Jim Harper, editor of WashingtonWatch.com, which first spotted the error, told CNET on Sunday. “When they haven’t taken time to name a bill, you have to wonder [...]

Ralph Roshto

Patriots,
Are these people really ‘representing’ you? Is this kind of open theft the kind of performance that we have come to accept from our elected representatives? Spread the word about this, write letters to the editor in your local newspaper. This was NOT an “error”…these people took time and trouble to write up and present and then vote on and pass this abomination. It was purposely constructed to hide the fact that they were stealing your money!
Do something, or else YOU are part of the problem!
Ralph Roshto
Lacombe, La
Let Freedom Reign

Web watchdog spots unusual congressional gaffe » Technology Articles - Technology And Programming Articles

[...] seems always to be hurrying,” Jim Harper, editor of WashingtonWatch.com, which first spotted the error, told CNET on Sunday. “When they haven’t taken time to name a bill, you have to wonder [...]

What Do Prince and H.R. 1586 Have in Common?

[...] reported on the WashingtonWatch.com blog and cnet news, this highly unconventional name may be what goes into law. With the Senate out of [...]

WashingtonWatch.com Digest – August 9, 2010 – The WashingtonWatch.com Blog

[...] In its haste to move a spending bill last week, the Senate has passed legislation without giving it a name. Read about this utterly strange situation in blog post entitled: “Senate Passes ‘The ______Act of____’–No Foolin’!.” [...]

Cnet Picks Up “Bill With No Name” Story – The WashingtonWatch.com Blog

[...] Senate Passes “The ______Act of____”—No Foolin’! [...]

What Do Prince and H.R. 1586 Have in Common? | Think Tank West

[...] reported on the WashingtonWatch.com blog and cnet news, this highly unconventional name may be what goes into law. With the Senate out of [...]

Congress About To Pass ‘The ______Act of____’ (These Are The People We Elect?) | PHP Hosts

[...] appears that our friendly Senators were in such a rush to get this bill through that they forgot to name it. Jim Harper noticed this when the bill showed up as the oddly named The XXXXXXAct ofXXXX on his [...]

Elaine

I guess this time Washington, D.C. was following Washington State which in its last legislative session, put bills up for a vote that had nothing in them, merely a title.

Washington State is run by leftwing liberals who like their counterparts in the other Washington use every dirty trick in the book to raise taxes and spending with no concern for the will of the people.

DESD

Sounds like innovation funding snuck through under i3 650,000,000 when everyone was watching Social Innovation Funding. The UNESCO Education for All Act that is now a US bill is what is vogue, but they already got the funding, so this is just more for that act; It’s okay they voted for bills without seeing them like Pelosi because it’s just more tripled foreign aid O wants anyway…. so we’ll just vote for it and stay in office and healthy.

Oil sure is ging to get expensive; Congress already said we won’t pay, so how are we going to pay for that order…unless we get 20 years of free money from our global tax ally the British. Global education tax…..like food, water, health care entitlements……

New Orleans ranks where in corruption?

Syracuse08 » Oppose H.R. 1586, the Bill Without a Name:

[...] This bailout is just one part of a grab-bag 52-page bill. But the most ridiculous thing about the bill is: The bill doesn’t even have a title! [...]

HR 1586:One Subject At A Time Act (OSTA) would put an end to this nonsense « The PPJ Gazette

[...] This bailout is just one part of a grab-bag 52-page bill. But the most ridiculous thing about the bill is  . . . The bill doesn’t even have a title!   [...]

The Unwanted Blog » Blog Archive » The Politics of Blank Checks

[...] http://www.washingtonwatch.com/blog/2010/08/08/senate-passes-the-______act-of____-no-foolin/ Take a look for yourself. Down toward the bottom of this page in the Congressional Record, it says, “SECTION 1. This Act may be cited as the “_______Act of______”. (The Library of Congress’ Thomas reporting system picked that up as the “XXXXXXAct ofXXXX,” so that’s how it shows up on our site.) [...]

Rule by Mad Libs « The Black Smoke

[...] by idiots: It appears that our friendly Senators were in such a rush to get this bill through that they forgot to name it. Jim Harper noticed this when the bill showed up as the oddly named The XXXXXXAct ofXXXX on his [...]

Congress About To Pass ‘The ______Act of____’ (These Are The People We Elect?) « The March to Marxism

[...] appears that our friendly Senators were in such a rush to get this bill through that they forgot to name it. Jim Harper noticed this when the bill showed up as the oddly named The XXXXXXAct ofXXXX on his [...]

Common Sense with Paul Jacob - Brought to You by Citizens in Charge Foundation » Archive » The Bill With No Name

[...] of October 2008. But the nameless bill has morphed somewhat. As Jim Harper of the Cato Institute observes, it was “introduced as one thing (TARP taxes), became another thing (an aviation bill), and is [...]

johnnyreb

Why and how do these elected officials hold onto their jobs. This bill is to steal money–plain and simple. Every politician who voted for this–should be voted out of office now.

Spend This Money, Dammit! – The WashingtonWatch.com Blog

[...] Senate Passes “The ______Act of____”—No Foolin’! [...]

______Act of_____ « Flöte

[...] Act of …nothing durch den Senat. Tags: Fehler, Politik, USApolitisches [...]

THEY DON’T EVEN READ THE TITLES: Senate passes “The ______Act of____” | Hammer of Truth

[...] THEY DON’T EVEN READ THE TITLES: Senate passes “The ______Act of____” This entry was posted in link. Bookmark the permalink. [...]

iamrightyouarewrong

This is pointless.

Cold Fury » “Spending billions of taxpayer dollars is a hurried and casual affair for our lawmakers”

[...] is why every last one who votes for this outrage ought to be swinging from lampposts this November. Figuratively [...]

Mad Lib Legislation | The Agitator

[...] of Congress continue to give careful, thoughtful consideration to the way they spend our money. Jim Harper explains the strange tale of H.R. 1586. As we noted here before, this is a “shell bill.” It was [...]

Jeffrey Smith

In broad daylight, $26 billion in debt, $10 billion just to pay off teachers unions. This is getting to be very serious money that we don’t have. We need better ideas than this.

Shirley Jenes

So all of the peaple on SSA and veterans surviors have to get by with less, so all the people in washington can have big vacations. They need to turn to god before it is to late. If they dont, ,there vacations will be in below. They do not realize that helping others is a joy, instead of themselves

And These High & Mighty Geniuses Think They’re Better Than the Rest of Us at Patriots for Freedom

[...] Senate Passes “The ______Act of____”—No Foolin’! …. In the House and Senate, they often publish amendments ahead of time, and it looks like someone was in a rush to get the amendment together, because they left blank lines where the new name of the bill should have been. [...]

Stopgap Spending – The WashingtonWatch.com Blog

[...] will swap out the language of the old bill for all-new continuing resolution language. (We’ve talked before about “shell bills”—they’re a sign that things aren’t going [...]

The WashingtonWatch.com Blog’s 2010 in Review – The WashingtonWatch.com Blog

[...] Your irresponsible Congress really pulled a doozie when it passed a bill with no name. We highlighted the silliness in a post called “Senate Passes “The ______Act of____”—No Foolin’!” [...]

Our Error-Prone Congress – The WashingtonWatch.com Blog

[...] C|Net news picked up the story. There are interesting comments on the blog post where we highlighted all this. [...]

Our Error-Prone Congress | US Senators

[...] C|Net news picked up the story. There are interesting comments on the blog post where we highlighted all this. [...]

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