An Epic—and Not Totally Unreasonable—Rant

 

In a moment of Network-worthy rage, Illinois state Representative Mike Bost went a little berserk Tuesday after House Speaker Mike Madigan set a vote on some important pension bills, giving lawmakers little time to read them. The vote seemed to push the Republican lawmaker over the edge. "Total power in one person's hands is NOT the American way!" he yelled, first throwing the bill in the air and then throwing some papers at his colleagues—all of whom seemed to be looking the other way as the rant started to take shape.

 

These damn bills that come out here all the damn time, come out here at the last second, and I’ve got to try to figure out how to vote for my people? You should be ashamed of yourselves! I’m sick of it! Every year we give power to one person! It was not made that way in the Constitution!
 
I feel like somebody trying to be released from Egypt. Let my people go! My God, they sent me here to vote for them! To argue for them! But I’m trapped. I’m trapped by the rules that have been forced down our throats.”
 
Folks, we live in a democracy. But not here. But not here

 

He went on to criticize the speaker's unchecked power in House. "When's it going to stop?" he asked, before slamming down his microphone in a pretty good imitation of a mic drop. The best part of video are the lawmakers around him—some look slightly bemused, others appear to just not want to watch.
 
I must say, I think Bost probably has a point. In this case, the bill was hundreds of pages long and had only just passed out of committee that morning. Members only had a couple of hours to before the measure came to the floor for a vote. Minority parties get steamrolled in an awful lot of states, meaning that members of both parties can easily just check out and largely just vote the party line. There's often a good bit of dead-weight on both sides of the aisle. Regardless of his stance on the issue itself, it's hard to criticize a guy who wants more time to read the bills and more time to debate them. 
 
 

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