Washington in the worst of hands

Mark Steyn:
Just another day in a constitutional republic of limited government by citizen representatives:

First thing in the morning, Gregory Roseman, deputy director of acquisitions (whatever that means), became the second IRS official to take the Fifth Amendment, after he was questioned about awarding the largest contract in IRS history, totaling some half-a-billion dollars, to his close friend Braulio Castillo, who qualified under a federal "set-aside" program favoring disadvantaged groups — in this case, disabled veterans.

For the purposes of federal contracting, Mr. Castillo is a "disabled veteran" because he twisted his ankle during a football game at the U.S. Military Academy prep school 27 years ago. How he overcame this crippling disability to win a half-billion-dollar IRS contract is the heartwarming stuff of an inspiring Lifetime TV movie.

Later in the day, Sen. John Hoeven, Republican of North Dakota and alleged author of the Corker-Hoeven Amendment to the immigration bill, went on Hugh Hewitt's radio show and, in a remarkable interview, revealed to the world that he had absolutely no idea what was in the legislation he "wrote."

Rachel Jeantel, the endearingly disastrous star witness at the George Zimmerman trial, excused her inability to comprehend the letter she'd supposedly written to Trayvon Martin's parents on the grounds that "I don't read cursive." Sen. Hoeven doesn't read legislative. For example, Section 5(b)(1):

"Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall establish a strategy, to be known as the 'Southern Border Fencing Strategy' ... ."

On the other hand, Section 5(b)(5):

"Notwithstanding paragraph (1), nothing in this subsection shall require the Secretary to install fencing ... ."

Asked to reconcile these two paragraphs, Hoeven explained that, "when I read through that with my lawyer," the guy said relax, don't worry about it. (I paraphrase, but barely.)
There is more.

He probably needs to find another lawyer.  There will be no meaningful expansion of a border fence, and there certainly will be no expansion of inland enforcement of immigration laws.  In fact, the Senate bill calls for even less enhancement than the current pitiful amount under the Obama administration.


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