adBlockCheck

Congress Fiercely Divided Over Completely Blank Bill That Says And Does Nothing

Top Headlines

Politics

Bill Clinton Resting Up To Sit Upright At Next Debate

CHAPPAQUA, NY—Stating that the former commander-in-chief had his sights squarely set on next Sunday, spokespeople for the Hillary for America campaign informed reporters Wednesday that Bill Clinton is currently resting up in preparation for another evening of sitting upright at the next presidential debate.

Fact-Checking The First Presidential Debate

Addressing issues ranging from national security to trade to their personal controversies, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump squared off in the first presidential debate Monday. The Onion takes a look at the validity of their bolder claims:

Viewers Impressed By How Male Trump Looked During Debate

HEMPSTEAD, NY—Saying the Republican nominee exhibited just the qualities they were looking for in the country’s next leader, viewers throughout the nation reported Monday night that they were impressed by how male Donald Trump appeared throughout the first debate.

Poll: 89% Of Debate Viewers Tuning In Solely To See Whether Roof Collapses

HEMPSTEAD, NY—Explaining that the American people showed relatively little interest in learning more about the nominees’ economic, counterterrorism, or immigration policies, a new Quinnipiac University poll revealed that 89 percent of viewers were tuning into Monday night’s presidential debate solely to see whether the roof collapses on the two candidates.

Trump Planning To Throw Lie About Immigrant Crime Rate Out There Early In Debate To Gauge How Much He Can Get Away With

HEMPSTEAD, NY—Saying he would probably introduce the falsehood in his opening statement or perhaps during his response to the night’s first question, Republican nominee Donald Trump reported Monday he was planning to throw out a blatant lie about the level of crime committed by immigrants early in the first presidential debate to gauge how much he’d be allowed to get away with.

Who Is Gary Johnson?

Former New Mexico governor and Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson is gaining some traction in the polls as an alternative to the two major-party nominees. Here’s what you need to know about Johnson

What Is The Alt-Right?

A recent speech by Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton criticizing the “alt-right” movement and its support of Republican nominee Donald Trump has shone the national spotlight on the ideologically conservative group. Here’s what you need to know about the alt-right

Diehard Trump Voters Confirm Rest Of Nation Should Stop Wasting Time Trying To Reach Them

‘If Anything Could Change Our Minds, It Would’ve Happened By Now,’ Say Candidate’s Supporters

WASHINGTON—Saying it should be very clear by now that absolutely nothing can change their position on the matter, steadfast supporters of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump told the rest of the nation Wednesday that it really shouldn’t bother trying to persuade them not to vote for him.

Tim Kaine Found Riding Conveyor Belt During Factory Campaign Stop

AIKEN, SC—Noting that he disappeared for over an hour during a campaign stop meet-and-greet with workers at a Bridgestone tire manufacturing plant, sources confirmed Tuesday that Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine was finally discovered riding on one of the factory’s conveyor belts.

Why Don’t People Like Hillary Clinton?

Although she’s secured the Democratic presidential nomination, many voters across all demographics are still hesitant to vote for Hillary Clinton. The Onion breaks down the reasons Clinton is having a hard time luring reluctant voters.

Who Are Donald Trump’s Supporters?

As Election Day draws near and GOP candidate Donald Trump continues to retain a loyal supporter base, many wonder who these voters are and what motivates them. Here are some key facts to know
End Of Section
  • More News
Up Next

Congress Fiercely Divided Over Completely Blank Bill That Says And Does Nothing

Congressional leaders in both parties have failed to find common ground on the completely text-free bill.
Congressional leaders in both parties have failed to find common ground on the completely text-free bill.

WASHINGTON—A blank piece of legislation that says nothing, does nothing, and contains no text whatsoever has been the source of heated debate in Washington this week, and has sharply divided Congress along partisan lines, Beltway sources confirmed Thursday.

Known as S.0000, the bill, which doesn’t have sponsors, co-sponsors, or an author, has reportedly drawn starkly contrasting opinions from legislators in both the Senate and House of Representatives, and has paved the way for a major legislative battle in coming months.

“At a time when millions of Americans are still struggling, we simply cannot afford this kind of devil-may-care federal policy,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), angrily waving the blank stack of papers in front of reporters. “We will not risk leading the American people into further hardship simply so the Obama administration can once again do whatever they please, regardless of the consequences. As it is now, the bill is both short-sighted and utterly irresponsible.”

Bill S.0000, which has sharply divided lawmakers.

“Frankly, we need to get back to the negotiating table and make some major changes before members of my party would even consider putting this up for a vote,” McConnell continued. “And if my friends on the other side of the aisle try push it through, well, they’ll pay the consequences at the ballot box.”

According to reports, 45 Democratic senators are in favor of the bill—which contains no text whatsoever—while 41 Republicans are staunchly opposed. At least three Republicans, including Sens. Richard Burr (R-NC), David Vitter (R-LA), and Susan Collins (R-ME), have said they would consider crossing the aisle and backing the bill, an announcement that drew fierce criticism from GOP leadership and primary threats from members within their own party.

Republican critics told reporters that the wordless document would “kill jobs and force another round of big government policies upon the American people.” Some Democrats said the blank legislation doesn’t go far enough, while a majority of party members accused the GOP of “willfully undermining the legislative process” and being totally averse to any and all concessions.

Republican senators filibustered the up-and-down vote proposed by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) earlier in the week, and sources said today’s cloture motion that would have forced S.0000 to a vote also failed to pass.

House Speaker John Boehner has already said the Senate version of the non-legislation is dead on arrival in the House, and that the Republican majority would work together to pass their own blank law.

“The truth is, Speaker Boehner doesn’t have enough support in his own party, and will need Democratic help to pass anything,” said Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD), adding that he “firmly and categorically stands behind” many of the nonexistent measures in the bill. “But once again, the GOP has decided they would rather spread vicious lies about the effects of this legislation, and they’ve successfully created a panic that is completely unfounded. Americans can’t afford to wait around any longer. We need to get this done now.”

While lawmakers have overwhelmingly fallen along party lines, several Democratic members of Congress who are up for reelection in 2014 have joined Republicans in blasting the legislation, fearing that showing any kind of support for President Obama and his agenda could lead to their ouster. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) has said the bill, which would enact no changes of any kind to either federal or statewide governments, is immoral, unconstitutional, and flies in the face of states’ rights.

President Obama, meanwhile, has heavily criticized Congress for its failure to vote on the proposal.

“The inaction of Congress and the hyperbolic, ultra-partisan statements regarding this legislation, are precisely why most Americans are frustrated with Washington,” Obama told the assembled White House press corps, adding that he is prepared to sign the empty sheet of paper into law as soon as it crosses his desk. “Our government representatives are putting politics ahead of the American people, and that’s unacceptable.”

Though some lawmakers remain optimistic over a future deal brokered between the two parties, many Capitol Hill insiders said any future compromise is overwhelmingly unlikely.

“Essentially, there are two possible outcomes for this bill: It’ll either get completely gutted in committee, or it’ll be put up for a vote and then be swiftly killed,” said Washington Post national political correspondent Karen Tumulty, adding that to enact the bill’s total lack of provisions would require heavy concessions from both sides of the aisle. “But let’s not beat around the bush here—the midterm elections are right around the corner, and these legislators don’t want to take a chance and do anything that might cast them in a negative light before their constituents go to the polls.”

“To be completely honest, the best bet would be if Congress just waits until after 2014, breaks the bill up the into smaller parts and tries to pass it piecemeal,” Tumulty added. “Or maybe they should just start from scratch.”

WATCH VIDEO FROM THE ONION

Sign up For The Onion's Newsletter

Give your spam filter something to do.

X Close