Washington, DC - Come on down. It's time to play "America's.Got Congress" --television's first ever legislative quiz show.
That's the battle cry you'll hear every weekday afternoon, thanks to a new law that turned the Senate and the House of Representatives into a TV reality program wrapped around a quiz show.
Co-hosted by Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nevada), the program provides a new legislative platform for the nation's law-making knuckleheads. Instead of voting on whether or not a bill becomes a law, the legislators will play games to "win" approval for the bills they are sponsoring.
Among the first batch of games are:
The price is right -- Defense contractors toss bundles of hundred dollar bills at the authors of three different laws. The lawmaker who pockets the most cash in the shortest amount of time wins. All three bills go back for further markup, never to see the light of day again.
Lie of the day -- A statement with no basis in reality is passed verbally from the speaker's podium to the perch of the Senate President, then passed back again, going twice through every member of Congress. When the utterance returns to the speaker, it is declared an infallible fact.
Weasel words -- Teams are created to make things sound better than they actually are. So sending in soldiers to die becomes "boots on the ground." And diluting the economy with "quantitative easing" makes us feel as though something positive is being done, when the opposite is occurring.
You do the math. My fingers are tired. -- Congressional contestants pull zany pranks on each other to get out of assignments in which arithmetic is involved, like budgets, taxes and body counts.
How a bill becomes a bore. - Laws that are hard to understand and needlessly complicated because of the way they are written will come out on top of this competition. As Lyndon Johnson once said: "They won't bleed it, if they can't read it."
Of course, Congress will still occasionally vote on immediate issues, such as what kind of soup to have for lunch. But mostly, the legislators will play "America's Got Congress" to move bills through and participate in America's favorite game show