Sexual harassment has been a hot button issue since last year. Hollywood and Washington DC has been awash in accusations, apologies, and payoffs. However, when an actor in Hollywood decides to pay off their victims, they use their own money. When a politicians decides to pay off their victims, they use your money:
An overhaul of Capitol Hill’s workplace misconduct system is in jeopardy and likely won’t be attached to a government spending bill this week, diminishing the likelihood of reform before the midterm elections, according to Politico.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), who introduced the bipartisan Congressional Harassment Reform Act last December, said on Monday that House and Senate leadership “stripped” provisions from the language from the spending bill at the eleventh hour.
Among its provisions, the act requires that members of Congress personally pay for sexual harassment settlements when they are found liable. Currently, lawmakers can tap taxpayer funds to settle with victims. Also, unless the victim opts for privacy, under the act, settlements would automatically be made public, thus lifting the veil of secrecy around the process.
Having access to tax dollars is yet another mechanism that politicians can use to shield themselves from the consequences of their actions. If Congress was composed of angels, this wouldn’t be an issue because the members wouldn’t vote themselves the power to use tax dollars to pay off sexual harassment victims. But Congress isn’t composed of angels, it’s composed of crooked bastards who only care about power.
While many voters will likely claim that they’re outraged by this, members of Congress know that voters will toss aside all of their outrage come election day because most of them will continue to cast their vote for the “lesser evil” incumbent. Members of Congress won’t hold themselves accountable and neither will the voters.