Congress invokes procedural Martial Law in order to force passage of budget

The use of martial law is not limited to simply restrictions placed upon a populace, but it can also be an administrative or procedural ploy implemented by Congress to force the passage of legislation or other laws.  And on Sept. 29. the lower House invoked martial law as a means to break the deadlock to get some form of short-term spending bill passed in lieu of a long term budget.

Congress has gone several years without passing a full annual budget, and instead has passed individual appropriation bills to fund individual portions of the government.  And with the de-funding of Planned Parenthood being the primary catalyst stopping passage of a budget for 2016, severe measures appear to now be in place to get a temporary bill passed to avoid a government shutdown.

A temporary government spending bill is expected to clear the House and Senate just before a midnight deadline on Wednesday, averting a government shutdown and providing funding until December 11. As a precaution, House lawmakers have invoked “martial law.”
The use of martial law fast-tracks a spending bill by bypassing typical procedures. One of those procedures is that the House of Representatives has to wait a day after the Rules Committee produces rules for a floor debate before a vote on the bill can occur, according to the Hill. By invoking martial law, House lawmakers can vote on the short-term government spending measure on the same day.
The short-term spending measure is still controversial in the House and may draw “no” votes from Republicans who are critical of their leaders for backing away from the removal of federal funding from Planned Parenthood. Conservatives have railed against the female health clinic ever since videos emerged allegedly showing representatives discussing the sale of fetal tissue from abortion procedures. – Russia Today

Today’s U.S. legislature is so broken that very few laws or appropriations can ever get passed, with the specter of government shutdowns almost a given every time the coffers become empty.  Yet ideologues on both sides of the aisle refuse to cut un-necessary pork projects which in the end place a burden on the American people who feel the brunt of Congress’s incompetence through increased taxes and greater debt borrowing.


America no longer has a working government, but a virtual corporation of spiteful shareholders who stumble from crisis to crisis like drunken sailors.  And as we have seen since 2008, when the going gets too difficult, or the next real challenge emerges for the governing body, the leaders simply quit en masse just as was done with Senator Chris Dodd, and with Congressmen Barney Frank and John Boehner.

Kenneth Schortgen Jr is a writer for,, and To the Death Media, and hosts the popular web blog, The Daily Economist. Ken can also be heard Wednesday afternoons giving an weekly economic report on the Angel Clark radio show.