One of Congress’ most basic responsibilities is to decide on a budget in a timely manner. Not an easy task, I’m sure.

It’s more difficult, however, when members on both sides of the aisle would rather focus on partisan politics than put aside their differences and work together. Many of them would rather fight like children fighting over a toy than do the job they were elected to do. That job is to represent the interest of the people of this country.

Many of us citizens say there’s nothing we can do, and I admit when we’re complacent we’re absolutely right. With freedom and democracy come responsibility. Our responsibility as citizens is to actively participate in our form of governance.

When our elected representatives aren’t doing the job they should be, it’s our responsibility to demand that they do. If they still won’t do their jobs, then it’s our responsibility to replace them by electing someone who will.

I’m a congressional district leader for the group No Labels. We’re campaigning to make Congress work and have a bill we’re trying to get passed, No Budget No Pay, in the House (HR 3643) in the Senate (S.1981). The hearing date on this is March 14.

Congress has a reasonable time frame in which to pass a comprehensive budget. The bill calls for them to not get paid every day after the deadline that a budget isn’t passed. It’s that simple.

Congress works for us, not for special interests, the super wealthy or big business. Review the bill at www.nolabels.org/work page. We urge people who agree to contact their U.S. senators and U.S. representatives. Please help us to get Congress to work.

Gerard N. Paré

Augusta

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