Saturday, December 09, 2006

Palm trees for "The Bloody 8th"

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If you know your Congressional History, there are moments of Grand Debates of Constitutional Issues and then moments when the Congress has knife-fights in the gutter. The 110th Congress is going down into the gutter. Here's why:

In the 99th Congress, there was a election in the Indiana Eighth district won by Rick McIntire over Frank McClosky by 72 votes. The House (run by Tip O'Neill) did not recognize McIntire and seated McClosky. After that, the Republican members walked out and Newt Gingrich rose. Radical among moderates, the Democrats actions toward the Minority party caused the frictions that occured during the "Republican Dozen" years.


After three recounts where Vern Buchanan won by 373 votes, Speaker-to-be Pelosi is already threatening not to seat Rep. Buchanan. Echoes of the 99th Congress. If Pelosi does not seat Buchanan, the Republicans should walk out. Not only should they walk out, but Rep. Buchanan should be considered part of their caucus and vote on the floor. The Republicans should fight this battle every day in the Well and in the Committee rooms. Every Democrat member they meet on the subway, in the Longworth cafeteria, the Rayburn Gym or the Cannon Press room. Republicans should not let this be a repeat of the 99th Congress.

But I have faith that Speaker Pelosi will not be so partisan and reach out to the Minority party. She will seat Rep. Buchanan and the Florida Democrats will act like adults and prepare for 2008. I couldn't stop laughing trying to write that. If gentlemenly Tip O'Neill could not reach out, how can we expect better of Speaker Pelosi. But I do have faith.

An aside:

I actually have dealings with this seat. Back during the 104th Congress, I interned for Dan Miller (R-FL-13) . Also, Buchanan's chief of staff is one of my mentors. These are good people, and they deserve to be there.

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