Watched the House "debate" on the Amtrak bill this morning. Rep after Rep would take his allotted time to praise his committee, his constituents, damn the price of gasoline, and recommend a vote for the Amtrak bill. None of them spoke about the bill itself. Issues such as levels of service, speed, adding new routes, improving existing routes, buying new rolling stock, electrifying more track, scheduling more or fewer trains, raising pay and benefits for Amtrak workers, dead silence. In short, the C-Span televised floor debate didn't enlighten this taxpayer one iota. A voice over commentator mentioned some dispute between the White House and Congress and a veto threat, but none of the floor speakers gave a hint of this, or emphasised some good feature of the bill that might qualify a veto over ride.
In short, our Reps are using their floor time to promote themselves and their party. They don't attempt to persuade voters or the other party of the merits of the bills before them.