Archive for the ‘Speaker’ Category

Uproar in Congress? Protest Against Pelosi, Leaders

January 6, 2009

A number of Republicans and some Democrats are considering a protest vote against Nancy Pelosi for House speaker when lawmakers convene Tuesday afternoon to launch the 111th Congress, FOX News has learned.

Once the House is sworn in, one of its first orders of business is to elect a speaker, a vote taken by the entire Congress.

The vote usually goes along party lines. Pelosi will run for the Democrats while Republicans were expected to nominate House Minority Leader John Boehner.

But some lawmakers of both parties are mulling a protest against their leaders and are considering casting their vote for the most senior member of the House, Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich. 

Dingell first took office in 1955 and is the second-longest serving U.S. representative in history.

House sources offered FOX News a number of reasons why some Democrats and Republicans might vote for Dingell. 

Firstly, it would give moderate and conservative Democrats from marginal districts some political space between them and the more liberal Pelosi. 

Fox News

Speaker of The House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi listens ...

Secondly, many House moderates are upset that the House Democratic Caucus unceremoniously ousted Dingell from his chairmanship of the powerful Energy and Commerce Committee in favor of the more liberal Henry Waxman, a Pelosi disciple. 

Thirdly, it would be highly unlikely for any Republicans to vote for Pelosi but some conservative Republicans have considered a protest vote against Boehner. He presided over two bloodbath elections for Republicans and while no GOPer has emerged as a strong enough alternative to be the minority leader, some might vote for Dingell as a clear statement of disapproval of Boehner.

Forging a coalition of conservative House Republicans with moderate Democrats could hold some potential to block Pelosi from the speakership, but chances of that scenario remain unlikely.

“That’s not going to happen,” said a senior Democratic aide when asked by FOX News about the odds of Pelosi losing the speakership on Tuesday.

Still, several GOP sources indicate that while no effort has been organized to draft Dingell, they expected the Michigan Democrat to score some votes.

Historically, only a couple of votes have deviated from each party’s candidate during each new session’s speaker tally, in part because those who vote against their party’s candidate are often remembered by loyalists when a favor is needed down the road. The vote is by roll call.

When the Democrats were in the minority and Pelosi was the Democratic leader, Rep. Gene Taylor of Michigan made a practice of casting his vote for Democratic Rep. Jack Murtha of Pennsylvania. Taylor did vote for Pelosi as speaker in 2007.

When the full House votes for speaker, a reading clerk calls the names of each lawmaker. Lawmakers respond orally with the name of their preference. Some lawmakers opt instead to vote “present.”

Ironically, the new speaker is traditionally sworn-in by the most-senior member of the House, in this case, Dingell.

Thai opposition readies to form new government

December 7, 2008

Thailand‘s main opposition party called Sunday for an emergency parliament session to prove its majority in a bid to form the next government and end months of political chaos, as loyalists of former premier Thaksin Shinawatra struggled to stay in power.

A new administration should bring some semblance of stability to this Southeast Asian nation, which has been gripped by political uncertainty since August when protesters — driven by a single-minded hatred for Thaksin and his allies — seized the prime minister’s office and later overran the capital’s two airports in a bid to topple government.

By VIJAY JOSHI, Associated Press Writer

Leader of Thailand opposition's Democrat Party Abhisit Vejjajiva ... 
Leader of Thailand opposition’s Democrat Party Abhisit Vejjajiva is seen on April 26, 2006 in Bangkok, Thailand. The Democrat Party said Saturday, Dec. 6, 2008 it has enough support to form a new government following a six-month political crisis that has paralyzed the country.(AP Photo/Apichart Weerawong)

The opposition Democrat Party said it will ask the speaker of Parliament on Monday to call an extraordinary session of the lower house so that it can prove it has a majority. Both Thaksin’s allies and the opposition say they have enough support to form a government.

“If the Democrat Party forms the government, I will try to boost confidence and revive the tourism industry and the image of the country,” said 44-year-old party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva, a former economics lecturer who will become the next prime minister if his party comes to power.

Read the rest:

The court ruling forcing Thailand's premier from office ... 
The court ruling forcing Thailand’s premier from office ended crippling protests, but analysts say the kingdom’s political problems run deep and will flare up again. (AFPTV)

Pelosi Worries Me….And Even Other Democrats

December 3, 2008

Sometimes….well ….  EVERY TIME Nancy Pelosi opens her mouth I start to worry….where will all the money come from and what will she suggest next….


Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) moves since the November elections have shaken up some of her colleagues, with some looking over their shoulders and others worried about how the Speaker will lead her expanded majority in 2009.

Next year is regarded as the biggest legislative opportunity for Democrats since 1993, the last time they controlled the White House and both chambers of Congress.

By Mike Soraghan
The Hill

But not all Democrats are celebrating. Liberals are worried about Pelosi’s vow to govern “from the middle” and centrists are concerned that the make-up of the House leadership team has shifted noticeably to the left.

Contrary to the jubilation of House Democrats after they regained control of the lower chamber after the 2006 elections, there is some unease among members heading into the 111th Congress.

“Everybody I talk to, everybody’s worried about something,” said a Democratic staffer.

Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) gestures during ... 
Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) gestures during a news conference on the financial restructuring plans submitted by U.S. automakers on Capitol Hill in Washington December 2, 2008.REUTERS/Yuri Gripas (UNITED STATES)

Pelosi’s effort to make some Democrats anxious could be a calculated maneuver as she seeks to maximize the effectiveness of her caucus heading into 2009. Pelosi’s hard-charging tone and decisions over the past month have sent a message to her colleagues: Don’t get too comfortable.

The seniority system that tempers the power of the Speaker is teetering, having received a body blow from Rep. Henry Waxman’s (D-Calif.) coup at the Energy and Commerce Committee.

When chairmen aren’t flinching at the possibility of a challenge from a junior member, they can look forward to being bounced by term limits in four years. That’s a change that Pelosi quietly endorsed in the 2007 House rules package.

Read the rest:


Pelosi Wants Another $700 Billion Or So In Bailour Money; Wants Also To “Make Well” Car Companies

Speaker Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today on the Labor Department’s announcement that the number of Americans continuing to receive unemployment benefits last week topped 4 million, the highest level in nearly 26 years.


“Despite the high level of continuing unemployment, the Bush Administration and Senate Republicans are still opposed to legislation the House passed in September that would create jobs and address urgent nutrition and health needs for those hurt by the recession.


“America needs bipartisan action now to get our economy back on track. Our House-passed legislation would begin the process of economic recovery by investing in job-creating infrastructure projects and helping struggling Americans with emergency food assistance and prevent deep cuts in health care and essential services. At a minimum, President Bush should support providing emergency food assistance and aid to states to maintain health care coverage for millions of Americans this holiday season.


“I again call on President Bush and Senate Republicans to work with us and get our economy moving again.”

Two statues of The Hill