We had the privilege of hosting a presentation from distinguished federal budget expert and adjunct professor at the McCourt School of Public Policy, Stan Collender, on Tuesday, September 26th. Applying his skills as a former stand-up comic, Collender provided students with entertaining insight into how congressional leaders use budgetary regulations to their advantage in order to achieve legislative victories.
Collender immersed his audience into a political reality that was eerily similar to Westeros – where leaders are willing to bend and twist their rules of governance to ensure that they accomplish their goals. Rational thinking is dangerous in describing such a political climate, according to Collender. Politicians have stopped working for effective and bipartisan policy solutions. Rather, he explained that they create a political atmosphere that ensures that their version of the bill gets passed without giving any care for compromise or dialogue on these issues.
Despite this bleak presentation, Collender gave his audience hope for an optimistic future, encouraging students who want to change the political climate for the better to further pursue their political future. People who care about shaping beneficial policy solutions and want to work alongside, rather than against, those with differing opinions to create compromises are needed in our government more so than ever today to stop the prison of divisiveness and partisanship that our country is entrapped in. Collender's description of a broken Congress only motivated and encouraged Georgetown students to continue their mission to serve the greater good and fix Congress so that it works for all of the American people.