Enjoying C-Span

C-Span isn’t much more than a camera aimed at congress, which means it’s usually boring. But today they covered the congress as Kevin McCarthy attempted to get voted in as House Majority Leader, so I tuned in.

A really fascinating thing happened when they took calls from the audience: no one had a better idea. Literally no one. If it had happened in a movie, it would have sounded like a ham-fisted parody, but it was real life, and it was amazing.

The template for the call went like this:

<Announce self>

<Say everything is broken>

<Host asks what they’d prefer>

<Reiterate that you don’t have a better idea, but something definitely needs to change>

<Host moves to next person>

Every. Single. Time. You don’t understand. It was masterful. I thought maybe someone was playing a trick on me considering how consistent every call was, and how truly lost each person was when pressured to propose something. Anything! But nope. Always at a loss.

Let me paraphrase the experience for you with two made-up calls.

“And next we have Bill from Atlanta. Bill? You’re live.”

“What? Oh, hi. Yeah, so I’m Bill. What I’ve been seeing the last few days has made me laugh so hard I’ve almost pissed myself. [Note: I took this actual quote from a guy who called in from Washington State] But it’s just sad, you know? These are the people who refused to certify the 2020 election, and yet they can’t even come together to agree on their leader. You know?”

“So it sounds like you have an idea who their leader should be?”


“Who do you think their leader should be? Is there a consensus candidate?”

“Oh, I don’t know about that. But they should get on with it, you know?”

“Thank you very much Bill. Next we’ve got Patricia from Alabama. Patricia?”

“Yes, I’m a Republican. I first voted when I was 21 and I’ve never missed a vote. I’m a senior citizen now.”

“How do you feel about what you’ve seen in congress these last two days?”

“Oh, just awful. These Republicans need to pick a leader so we can get things done. The American people want them to get things done.”

“So does that mean you’re for Kevin McCarthy?”

“Oh, no. Not at all.”

“Who do you hope wins then?”

“Ummm…. Well I’m not sure I know. What they need to do is put their heads together and pick someone that’s not Kevin McCarthy.”

“Thanks, Patricia.”