So, the Republicans in the Senate are terrified that they may have to work up to and including Christmas, to settle some unresolved legislation, including ratification of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), and the $1.1 trillion omnibus funding resolution, that the Democrats want to complete before the end of the lame duck session.
It is impossible to do all of the things that the majority leader laid out without doing — frankly, without disrespecting the institution and without disrespecting one of the two holiest of holidays for Christians and the families of all of the Senate, not just the senators themselves but all of the staff
How many recesses and breaks does Congress get, including practically the entire month of August? Certainly more than people in these professions, many of whom must work, not only Christmas, but other holidays as well:
- Members of the military, especially those stationed overseas
- Police, firefighters, EMTs – yes, those same ones who came to the World Trade Center site to help and were told by our own Christie Whitman that the air was safe, and are now being denied health benefits for illnesses contracted from breathing the “safe” air.
- Health workers: doctors, nurses, orderlies, maintenance crews. Hospitals have no days off.
- Pilots, flights attendants, air traffic controllers, other airport crew members (how many are flying members of Congress home for Christmas?)
- Food service workers, cooks, waitstaff, caterers (how many are working on Christmas to feed members of Congress who can afford paid help for their holiday meals?)
- Workers at 24/7 convenience stores, who help us out when we forgot to pick up a container of egg nog or whipped cream for our desserts.
- Workers at 24/7 gas stations, who, here in New Jersey, stand out in the cold because we don't pump our own gas.
Are there more? You bet. Let's not forget members of the press, who are charged with keeping these public servants honest.
If these pious Senators are so concerned about their holy holiday, especially one whose motto includes “Peace On Earth, Good Will Towards Men”, why can't they take the time to work out a peace treaty before Christmas?
Stop whining and get to work.