Republicans take over in the House of Representatives in this New Year. What should we expect to see that is different from 2022? Gridlock. That may be the best news we have had in a long time.
In terms of legislation, the only things that will likely pass are bi-partisan bills that make it appear that the lawmakers are accomplishing something. However, anything that might make one party appear to be ‘caving’ to the other is out. Eyes are already on setting things up for the 2024 election cycle. What lawmakers want more than anything are issues that they can sell to make themselves look good and the other party look bad. They don’t want solutions. They want issues they can run on.
Both parties are actually struggling to keep their own members on the same page
The most power that Republicans will yield with a House majority is the power of the purse. Any bills that involve spending must start in the House of Representatives and then go to the Senate. This power can virtually kill any initiative that the President wishes to pursue that is left of center. However, their ability to pass initiatives of their own will be stymied by a Democrat Senate who doesn’t even have to bring the bill to a vote if the Senate majority leader wants to kill it.
Both parties are actually struggling to keep their own members on the same page. Ultra-progressives on the Democrat side and ultra-conservatives on the Republican side wield a significant influence. Both the House and the Senate are so closely split that it takes almost every party member to vote for a bill to get it passed. Moderates can’t simply ignore those on the fringe or they will lose their vote.
In this new environment, we may see parties finagle a bit and get a favorite cause through by some manner of quid pro quo. You give us this one and we will give you that one. However, nothing of significance will be passed.
House investigations will be the biggest difference moving forward
House investigations will be the biggest difference moving forward. With Republicans in charge they can turn the attention from investigating Donald Trump to investigating the involvement of federal entities in manipulating the news and thereby possibly impacting elections. The Biden family influence peddling accusations will be investigated. They will seek to get to the bottom of the COVID origin question and the possible media manipulation in that regard. However, most media outlets tend to ignore stories that make the Democrat party look bad so most people, unless they are really seeking out information, will never hear about those investigations.
From a financial standpoint, there will likely be no new expensive initiatives passed on either side. Hopefully this, and the Federal Reserve’s increases in interest rates will cause inflation to begin coming down later this year. Of course both parties will claim that they are solely responsible for such positive changes in the economy. With interest rates and inflation as high as they are, however, there is still a good chance that we will see a downturn that even the Democrats will have to admit is a recession. The Republicans will use this against the Democrats but you can bet they are secretly cringing at the thought that we will be out of a recession and seeing a growing economy again by the 2024 elections. It will give Democrats the ability to pat themselves on the back, describing how they have led the country through the economic downturn and guided it to improvement.
The bottom line is that not much will be done by our Federal Government in the next couple of years, which many would argue is a good thing. The news from Washington D.C. will change from anti-Republican rhetoric to little news at all on most major news outlets. It just might be a quiet year. Maybe we should just read a few good books and ignore the insignificant hoopla coming from the Capital.
Happy New Year!