On cusp of budget deal, Congress far from functional
When Senate minority leader Charles Schumer announced a two-year budget deal this week he was all smiles. There’s no resolution for young unauthorized immigrant “Dreamers” (to the dismay of Democrats). And the debt looks set to increase (to the ire of GOP deficit hawks). But the military gets the spending increase it wanted, while lawmakers also boosted funds for domestic priorities like health care and disaster relief. Lawmakers universally describe the budgeting process – Congress’s most basic job – as being in a state of chronic breakdown, Exhibit A for dysfunction on the Hill.