And now we come to the second in the series of reasons why I love Congress.
Reason 2: 2 words: Parlimentary Procedure. Parlimentary procedure ensures that debate is orderly and that business gets done. This results in floor debates where members of Congress have to yield time to themselves and to members of the opposition; meaning, you will be interrupted during a heated debate, but you don’t have to let them speak. In yielding time to yourself, I don’t understand why members don’t just yield themselves as much time as they need. I’ve seen one member yield himself “as much time as I require,” and other members yield themselves 5 minutes then, nearing the end of that 5 minutes, yield themselves time in 1 minute increments until they were done.
You also have to refer to others as “the honorable gentleman/lady from such and such state,” even when they piss you off. I don’t know why but that amuses me to no end. If I’m in the middle of a heated debate, I’m not going to take the time to call you such a respectful name but they have to. And, in the Senate, Senators may not insult one another’s states or “impute to another Senator or to other Senators any conduct or motive unworthy or unbecoming a Senator.” All of these rules make floor debates the most nastily polite arguments you will ever see.