This article originally appeared in The Standard-Examiner. The author, Representative Lee Hamilton, is Co-Chair of PSA’s Advisory Board.
The future of Congress should lie in the past
There is a fundamental truth about our political system that seems to have been forgotten in these days of high-stakes brinksmanship over policy: Democracy is a process, not an outcome.
In a representative democracy like ours, how we reach a result is every bit as important as the result itself — and maybe even more important.
For a long time, Congress recognized this. That is why, over many decades of practice, it built what is known as the “regular order” — a set of processes and means of doing business designed to ensure that proposals get careful scrutiny and all voices are given proper and respectful consideration.