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Overnight

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Doing nothing is their choice

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The president is the nation’s chief executive. He puts the will of Congress into action. He vows to “faithfully execute” the laws of the United States, laws that originate in the legislative branch.

But what is he to do if legislative branch won’t pass laws to execute? What is he to do if legislators merely pose and puff and otherwise avoid anything that might irritate a hopped-up slice of the electorate? What to do if the primary strategy of the leaders of Congress, of both parties, is to do nearly nothing, even in the face of national problems festering before their eyes for two decades or more? What if all Congress will do is slowly seek out political leverage in the coming election, while doing nothing that might put it at risk, like actually voting on legislation?

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