Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Congressional Staffers Harrass Long-Suffering U.S. Capitol Police

This story in The Hill has one bit of surprising news - surprising to me, at least - which is that “the [U.S. House of Representatives] does not require criminal background checks to be conducted on the 8,000 staff members who work with lawmakers.” That doesn't seem wise.

The rest of the story is not exactly news. It turns out that Congressional staffers have an inflated sense of their importance. I'm shocked, shocked!

My heart goes out to the U.S. Capitol Police officers who must deal with thousands of the most self-important people in the world every day. If we paid them each a nickel for every time they heard the words do you know who I am? coming from some intern to the junior assistant to the deputy chief of the minority staff of the Subcommittee on Insular Affairs Trade Preparedness Policy Funding and Railroad Pensions, I’ll bet they could all retire tomorrow.

The situation calls for a modern-day “Clubber” Williams ("there is more law at the end of a policeman’s nightstick than in a decision of the Supreme Court”) but you can’t get away with that behavior anymore, not now that there are surveillance cameras everywhere.


Anonymous said...

I think the next question would then be...

...if criminal background checks were required to be conducted on the 8,000 staff members of the lawmakers, how many staff members would have criminal backgrounds?? And, thus, how many of them would be staff members no longer?

TSB said...

More than a few, I think. But then, maybe they wouldn't be fired. We once had a member of Congress (Representative Jay C. Kim of California) who had to wear an electronic monitoring ankle bracelet for a couple months after he was convicted of accepting a quarter million dollars in illegal contributions, and he served out the remainder of his term.

Anonymous said...

It's Friday, and that means that the Fifth Weekly State Department Blog Roundup is up - and you're on it!

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