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Michael Bennet Complains on Open Senate Mic: 'It's All Rigged'

3 years ago
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As the Senate voted Tuesday on amendments to a food safety bill, Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) could be overheard by C-SPAN viewers venting his frustrations about the lame-duck session of Congress and the legislative process that has left the Senate with multiple items on its to-do list and precious little time to get them done.

"It's all rigged. The whole conversation is rigged," Bennet said in a loud whisper to Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.). "The fact that we don't get to a discussion before the break about what we're going to do in the lame duck. It's just rigged."

Although Bennet's complaint was meant to be private, he spoke from the chair of the Senate's presiding officer, where a microphone picked up his comments and broadcast them to the television audience listening in.

Bennet recently won re-election to his first full term after being appointed to fill a vacant Senate seat by Colorado's Democratic governor, Bill Ritter. As one of the newest members of the chamber, Bennet has voiced his frustration about its arcane rules and has introduced a bill to change the filibuster rule that allows 41 senators to block debate on a bill before a vote ever happens.

Bennet's spokesman, Adam Bozzi, said the senator's open-mike moment was nothing more than what he has been saying since he arrived on Capitol Hill.

"For almost two years, he has talked about needing to fix a broken Washington," Bozzi said. "We can't move forward on major issues facing our country because of a broken system that is rigged to prevent progress."

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218 Comments

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donran42

Hey Stenogirl, "People want, people want". "Everybody wants to help the poor", mostly with someone else's money. Everybody want's something. It's not the governments place to help individuals! When government got into the helping busines everything went downhill. The more they "help" the worst it gets. There was a time when family, friends and neighborhoods looked after one another but if '72 is your birth year your too young to know that. I'm 68 and working. For the past year I've paid the rent and living expense's for an unemployed friend with 2 young kids. No one is going to reimburse me for that but I don't mind, it's my choice. Not like the government stealing money from my paycheck for their favorite causes to buy votes or to give to some lazy slob I've never met. I can do more good with my money than any politician. Let them stick to national defence, interstate commerce & uniform currency and I'm not sure we can trust them with that anymore.

December 07 2010 at 4:19 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
makeredhappy

I just hope the people who voted in all the new Republicans and who support the current batch of Republicans in Congress will be happy living with the cuts in many other areas that will come...Medicare, Medicaid, the mortgage tax deduction, etc.....I can't believe all these Republican morons were elected by ONLY 2% of the population who are being protected by the Republicans!! You voted them in, I hope you all suffer when their changes really hit home!

December 07 2010 at 3:20 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
charles

this mess continues to get worse because our "law makers" don't have a clue as to what the problems are.....they shouldn't be allowed to vote on ANYTHING until they can show basic competancy on the bills presented, including some simple insight as to what's likely to fall out 10 years down the road...at some point the tangled knots of their actions will defy undoing....hmmm, lets see ... as a concession to the people they should all be made to wear Nascar style jump suits w/ the logos of their major sponsors emblazened front to back top to bottom....as long as they serve, no civilian clothing allowed

December 05 2010 at 10:52 PM Report abuse +7 rate up rate down Reply
stenogirl1972

HELLO!!! Tax cuts DO not create jobs. DEMAND creates jobs. If you manufacture shoes and you get a tax cut you do not hire people to make more shoes. If you can an increase in demand you hire more people to make shoes. Tax cuts at this point are a joke. The rich have taken the biggest share of the profits in this country for the last few years but they did not hire more people, they laid them off. The rates are too low on all of us to sustain the country we want. Poll after poll tells us that the American people want Medicare and want services and want to help the poor. If you ask them if they want "welfare" they say no. If you ask them to "aid the poor" they overwhelmingly say yes. We need fundamental changes to the way we run our country but the new influx of Special Interest money will mean Insolvency in the next five years for the US. There is no other possible outcome with monumental change. That change will not come from the establishment. The establishment is going to continue to give big money to big donors who have figured out that the best way to get our money is through the Federal Government. We are so beyond Scr**ed at this point. The GOP has a million morons to spread their propaganda online and the Dems refuse to see the nose on their face. Will they come together to save this great nation? No. Get a passport, get out of debt, open a small business that provides a basic neccesity at low cost and hunker down for the coming Third World America. The Banana Republic is here and it is only a matter of years before the transformation is complete.

December 05 2010 at 1:07 PM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to stenogirl1972's comment
wesxauto

Steno i do know of a company that moved a big part of its production to China just because they figured that the cap and tax program on the democrats wish list was going to happen. Even though the cap and tax died Thank Goodness its effects pushed other companys to look to moving out of the US. Companys will not and should not give up their profit margin and will move to maintain it. The goverment should thinking of ways to help keep manufacturing and companys healthy in the USA instead of figuring out ways to tax and regulate them.

December 06 2010 at 10:20 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
luapmi2

Oh wow...America is broken. Can't get a single thing done. How is it that America is the envy of every country on earth? How is it that people laid down their lives to protect her? How is it that people climb onto rubber tires in hopes of floating to her shores? I am so embarrassed, I am almost 53 and nobody told me we have such a horrible country.

December 04 2010 at 5:18 AM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
wesleyandsally

All of washington is broke and the more they mess with our lives the broker we get.It's on both sides of the aisle not just one.The majority of the people that we, the american people, hired to work FOR us in congress think they are our bosses and it is constitutionally the other way around.They spend like drunken sailors and then make us bail them out by increasing taxes and fees.We must let them feel the pressure of unhappy voters that are more than willing to replace them if they don't do what we tell them to do!

December 03 2010 at 2:59 PM Report abuse +11 rate up rate down Reply
ettu

There are some honest people in our Fed and State Legislatures. I am certain of it. It would behoove these people to take what they know, what they hear, to the people. Let the peole know what is going on, and let us put pressure where pressure is needed. If you hold back out of fear of losing the support of your Party, or your colleagues, then think about this. What will you gain, and what will your children inherit, if you do not speak up? Is your job in Congress that important, that you would forsake the future of America just to keep it?

December 03 2010 at 9:47 AM Report abuse +10 rate up rate down Reply
trattermazur

AS LONG AS I CAN REMEMBER SINCE THE TIME OF HOOVER THE REPUBLICAN PARTY HAS KEPT THE WORKING PEOPLE DOWN.THE RICH GOT RICHER AND THE POOR GOT POORER,YOU DONT HAVE TO BE SMART TO KNOW THIS,OBAMA DID NOT CAUSE THIS DEPRESSION,BUSH AND HIS PARTY DID AND I KNOW OBAMA WILL GET US OUT OF THIS.WAIT AND SEE.

December 02 2010 at 7:02 PM Report abuse -6 rate up rate down Reply
4 replies to trattermazur's comment
tolsonp

Iam not rich, but the rich already pay more than their fair share. You can't keep milking the rich and then expect them to create jobs. If Congress passes a bill that only extends the tax break to the middle class, expect to see many more people laid off. One suggestion for social security (which I am on): A spouse should not be able to collect against the husbands/wifes benefits as long as the husband/wife is alive. Another gripe I have is that every time I turn around Congress is going on break or they are flying home to keep in touch local populace. What a sack of doo-doo, since when does Congress hear anything the American people say?

December 02 2010 at 6:46 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to tolsonp's comment
sutton215

If what you say, concerning tax breaks on income above $250,000 or 1 million dollars, were true. Seems to me we would not be in the situation we are in. Also why did the Republicans not make these tax rates permanent when they were in total control from 2001 & 2003 through 2006?

December 06 2010 at 11:05 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
pnkgtr

It doesn't work that way. Warren Buffet pays a lower tax percentage than his secretary and even he says that it's unfair.

December 07 2010 at 4:00 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
puppetcongress

OMG an honest Congress person! Yes its rigged what else is new

December 02 2010 at 6:43 PM Report abuse +17 rate up rate down Reply

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