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When the going gets tough, the ‘tough’ ... hold hearings?

February 28, 2008
Congress has yet to provide funding needed by American troops in Iraq, Afghanistan and other trouble spots. Lack of a sensible energy policy is contributing to budget-busting gasoline prices for many American families.

The so-called “foreclosure crisis” remains a concern. Health care costs and the Social Security system’s solvency haven’t been discussed meaningfully in years.

And Congress gives the appearance of being preoccupied with ... professional athletes’ drug habits.

The big story on Capitol Hill lately has been testimony by some involved in professional sports. Specifically, the spotlight was on a congressional hearing at which baseball superstar Roger Clemens was grilled about allegations that he used steroids and human growth hormone to give himself an edge. A former trainer insists that he injected the drugs into Clemens. The star, of course, says the trainer is lying.

Lawmakers questioning them and others sometimes became so overwrought that, at some points, accusations of political partisanship were traded.

Over baseball.

Members of Congress involved in investigating drug use by professional athletes at times remind us of hot-doggers on the playing field — more interested in wowing the fans than in taking care of business.

Heaven knows, there’s plenty of important business awaiting lawmakers’ attention, and their staffs’ energy and expertise. Would someone please throw out the first pitch on some of it?


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