December Is No Time to Ignore Congress

Congress’s lame-duck session is an ideal time for both parties to pass last-minute legislation while voters are busy Christmas shopping and before members who lost their reelection bids surrender their seats in January. Especially this year, real danger lurks in such legislation. Above all, there’s the threat that Congress turns the expanded child tax credit into a new and very costly permanent entitlement. But other threats loom. I’ll look at a few of them today.

A lame-duck session is a great opportunity to push for too much spending on irresponsible pet projects, and more will probably be pushed through this year with little accountability. That’s partly because Congress yet again failed to do its basic job of passing a budget by Sept. 30. Instead, legislators kicked the deadline down the calendar to Dec. 16. If they fail again, the federal government will partially shut down. That threat alone makes passing a budget, an …

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