House of Representatives

Will Paul Ryan be the next speaker? I hope not

Featured image Following Kevin McCarthy’s surprising decision to drop out of the race for House Speaker, attention has turned to Paul Ryan. The widely respected Wisconsin man is viewed by many as the Republican representative most likely to (1) obtain the votes needed to become Speaker and (2) perhaps provide a degree of party unity post-selection. Ryan apparently does not want the job, for an obvious reason (it’s a daunting post) and »

Shocker: Kevin McCarthy Pulls Out

Featured image In a stunning development, Kevin McCarthy has withdrawn his candidacy to be Speaker of the House. Republican Congressmen apparently were as surprised as we are: McCarthy shocked his colleagues at the start of Thursday’s closed meeting, telling them he was not the right person for the job. He recommended that the election be postponed and Boehner delayed it. “There was total shock, and then total silence,” said Rep. Robert Pittenger, »

Boehner’s shortcomings, not GOP dysfunction, were his downfall

Featured image John Boehner’s resignation has sparked another round of claims from the mainstream media that the Republican party is hopelessly divided and incapable of governing. These claims, one suspects, are presented more in delight than in sorrow. There’s no question that there deep divisions exist within the party about tactics and, to a much lesser degree, policy. But the MSM’s spin on Boehner ignores the possibility that his problems as Speaker »

What Next For the House?

Featured image Speaker John Boehner’s resignation reflects the fact that virtually every Republican in the United States is disappointed in the Congress. With Republican majorities in both the House and the Senate, it is hard to point to any significant accomplishments in the last eight months. At a minimum, I had expected a Republican Congress to pass a series of popular, conservative measures which the Democrats would be obliged to filibuster (if »

Ideology trumps charm, and certainly charm’s absence

Featured image The House, as John noted, has thwarted President Obama’s attempt to expand his trade negotiating power, casting considerable doubt over whether he will be able to secure the Pacific trade accord he craves (and which, in my opinion, America could use). Despite a furious last-minute lobbying effort by Obama, only 40 House Democrats voted in favor of “trade adjustment assistance” to workers unemployed as a result of free trade, a »

Grant Starrett for Congress

Featured image Grant Starrett has announced that he’s running for Congress in Tennessee’s Fourth Congressional District. Last week, I introduced Grant to our readers and explained why I intend to support him. I’m not alone. Previously, Erick Erikson tweeted that he would support Grant if he enters the race. And today, Ramesh Ponnuru writes: I’ve met Starrett and was impressed by his intelligence and commitment to conservative causes. But even if he »

introducing Grant Starrett [Updated]

Featured image From 2011 through 2014, the House of Representatives was conservatism’s only reliable line of defense against President Obama’s leftist encroachments. It’s quite possible that after 2016, conservatives will again need to look to the House to play this vital defensive role. To maintain control of the House, and to keep it in fighting trim, Republicans must run strong, principled conservatives — and not just for open and Democrat-held seats. We »

House Prepares to Join Senate on Iran

Featured image The White House tried to demonize 47 Senate Republicans as traitors because they wrote an open letter explaining the important role that the Senate plays in any binding treaty. It looks as though the “traitor” list is about to get much longer, as a bipartisan group of over 300 Congressmen are preparing a letter of their own, reminding President Obama of the role that Congress must play in any meaningful »

Boehner re-elected speaker, but 25 Republicans dissent

Featured image As expected, John Boehner will continue on as Speaker of the House. He received 216 votes. That’s less than a majority of the full House, but comfortably more than a majority of the votes cast. Like John, I’m not happy to see Boehner serve two more years as Speaker, given his handling of “Cromnibus.” But I wasn’t convinced that the candidates who ran against him were Speaker material. 24 Republicans »

For Speaker, Louis Gohmert [Updated]

Featured image Texas Congressman Louis Gohmert announced on Fox and Friends this morning that he will challenge John Boehner as Speaker of the House in the new Congress. I hope Gohmert wins, and urge conservatives in the House delegation to vote for him. I have generally defended Boehner in the past, but in my view his conduct with regard to the continuing resolution/omnibus spending bill that was passed during the lame duck »

About That Steve Scalise Story: Oops, Never Mind? [Updated]

Featured image As you undoubtedly know, liberal politicians and pundits have been hailing the claim that House Republican Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana attended a meeting of a white supremacist group in 2002 as the biggest story since Bridgegate. Scalise himself said that he had no recollection of addressing such a meeting, but if he did it was an error in judgment for which he apologizes. Now it turns out that the »

Go figure

Featured image In an attempt to salvage “Cromnibus,” President Obama sent his chief of staff to Capitol Hill to present House Democrats with the following argument: the budget deal under consideration today is better for liberals than what Democrats will be able to get next year, when Republicans control both chambers of Congress. From the Democrats’ point of view, the president’s message seems both indisputable and dispositive. Yet Democrats resoundingly rejected Obama’s »

Cromnibus Survives, 219-206 [Updated]

Featured image It took nearly 60 Democrats to get the job done, but John Boehner and Barack Obama combined to slide the continuing resolution/omnibus spending bill through Congress. Still no explanation of why it is better to fund the fiscal year now, rather than in a month or two when Republicans control both chambers. Many conservatives are upset about the bill because it doesn’t attempt to de-fund amnesty. That isn’t my main »

Cromnibus Nearly Fails on Procedural Vote [UPDATED]

Featured image It’s Keystone Kops in Washington, as John Boehner’s continuing resolution/omnibus spending bill nearly failed a procedural vote to bring it to the floor this morning. The tally was 214-212, and it took one Republican vote-switcher to avoid a colossal embarrassment for Speaker Boehner. The embarrassment is bad enough, as the vote on the rule is normally along party lines. All Democrats voted against the rule this morning, which I take »

McSally’s sally: An update

Featured image When they finished counting the votes in Arizona’s Second Congressional District — I believe it’s the redistricted version of the district formerly represented by Gabrielle Giffords — Republican challenger Martha McSally led incumbent Democrat Ron Barber by 161 votes. The final count is subject to a mandatory recount that is underway. The recount is to conclude by December 16. Republicans held two seats in Louisiana’s runoff election yesterday. (In one »

McSally’s sally

Featured image When they finished counting the votes in Arizona’s Second Congressional District — if I have this right, it’s the redistricted version of the district formerly represented by Gabrielle Giffords — Republican challenger Martha McSally led incumbent Democrat Ron Barber by 161 votes. The final count is subject to a mandatory recount, but we have ground for hope that McSally’s lead will hold up. A tranche of votes discovered after the »

Meanwhile, what about the House? [UPDATED]

Featured image The day before the election, attention is focused, as it should be, on the battle for control of the Senate. But we shouldn’t neglect the House. No one thinks the Democrats will win back the House this year; it’s understood that, to the contrary, the GOP is likely to build on its current margin. But the more seats the GOP picks up, the greater the likelihood it will retain control »