Investigations into the statistics of how single party rule has effected the operation of Federal Government have found a compelling story. It seems
that the Congress has taken a partisan "hands off" approach to it's investigative responsibility into governments' operation, in favor of an agenda
driven consensus. Comparisons to the prior Democratic Congressional/Executive discount the "everyone does it" argument, and a comparison to the
Clinton presidency with a GOP Congress shows how everything possible, no matter how mundane, was investigated, while major issues ( torture ) today
are left practically unexamined.
Back in the mid-1990s, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, aggressively delving into alleged misconduct by the Clinton
administration, logged 140 hours of sworn testimony into whether former president Bill Clinton had used the White House Christmas card list to
identify potential Democratic donors. In the past two years, a House committee has managed to take only 12 hours of sworn testimony about the abuse of
prisoners at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison.
An examination of committees' own reports found that the House Government Reform Committee held just 37 hearings described as ''oversight" or
investigative in nature during the last Congress, down from 135 such hearings held by its predecessor, the House Government Operations Committee, in
1993-94, the last year the Democrats controlled the chamber. Party loyalty does not account for the difference: In 1993-94, the Democrats were
investigating a Democratic administration.
But the agenda was different during the Clinton administration. The government reform panel alone, for example, issued 1,052 subpoenas related to
investigations of the Clinton administration and the Democratic National Committee from 1997 to 2002, and only 11 subpoenas related to allegations of
The panel received more than 2 million pages of documents and heard from 44 Clinton administration officials, including two White House chiefs of
staff, according to statistics culled by Democratic staff on the Government Reform Committee.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
Anything and everything was investigated under Clinton. Yet now with so much murky, a fraction of the needed oversight is allowed through, because of
Republican majority. While I seriously fault the Democrats for being fearful of their political careers, thus censoring the absolute need to shout out
on the Senate floor the repeated illegalities of this administration fearing recrimination, I can sympathized for those Independents/Dems/Republicans
trying to get answers and bring things to light - the stonewall is absolute.
The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office has found that from October 1996 to March 1998 -- well before the impeachment hearings -- the Clinton
White House staff had spent more than 55,000 hours responding to more than 300 congressional requests, and had produced hundreds of video and audio
tapes, along with hundreds of thousands of pages of documents, to congressional investigators.
IMAGINE if we had that same scrutiny on the current administration!