Democrats behaving badly


July 18, 2003, 06:56 PM,2933,92361,00.html

Sparks Fly in Congress Over Pension Funds Debate

Friday, July 18, 2003

WASHINGTON — Capitol Police officers are supposed to protect members of Congress, but Friday they were called in by one House chairman to oust some Democratic members from a committee library.

Hours of rancor later, the conflict ended in a failed full House vote to reprimand House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas.

The controversy began when Thomas, R-Calif., quickly gaveled through a committee vote on a pension finances bill that Democrats say they had not had enough time to review.

To review the bill, Democrats congregated in the panel's library off the main committee room while Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., the only Democrat left in the room, objected.

At that point, Thomas said Stark's motion came too late, to which Stark replied by crudely questioning Thomas' intelligence and squabbling with committee Republican Scott McInnis, who stood up for Thomas.

"That particular individual threatened me with physical harm," said McInnis, R-Colo., referring to Stark.

The committee reporter captured the essence of Stark's less-than-soaring rhetoric, read on the House floor by Rep. Kenny Hulshof, R-Mo.

"'Oh, you think you are big enough to make me, you little wimp? Come over here and make me. I dare you,'" Hulshof recited.

According to the stenographer's transcript, the room then broke out in laughter, at which point Stark raged, "You little fruitcake, you little fruitcake. I said you are a fruitcake."

According to a Democratic complaint, after Stark's outburst, Thomas — through staff — ordered "the United States Capitol Police to remove minority-party members of the committee from [an adjacent library] during the meeting, causing the United States Capitol Police thereupon to confront the minority-party members of the committee."

What followed was a ruling by the House sergeant-at-arms' office that Capitol Police did not have the authority to evict Democrats from the library. The two sides then proceeded to the House floor to condemn each other on the record.

Outraged Democrats accused Thomas of an abuse of power.

"We will not be intimidated. We will not be immobilized. We live in a democracy and not a police state," said Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga.

"This is what Republicans have come to in the running of this House. If they don't like what we say even in a private meeting, they'll try to have us arrested," said Rep. Bob Menendez, D-N.J.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., introduced a resolution that not only says the House "disapproves of the manner in which Representatives Thomas conducted the markup of legislation," but finds that the bill that started the whole conflict be considered invalid because it had not been properly ordered out of the committee for a full House vote.

Republicans insist that Thomas was right to call Capitol Police after the outburst from Stark.

"I would have called the sergeant-at-arms to restore order," said Rep. J.D. Hayworth, R-Ariz.

"What I am very unhappy about is the fact that this resolution has even been brought to the floor. It is an embarrassment to this institution," said Rep. Phil English, R-Pa.

In the end, Republicans succeeded in having the Democratic measure tabled on a strict party-line vote, effectively ending the matter. The Ways and Means Committee also recorded approval for the $50 billion pension fund bill that allows Americans to put more tax-deferred income into retirement accounts and to shield it longer from the Internal Revenue Service. Companies will also be allowed to pay less into their pension funds.

And these people are are lawmakers? Is it any wonder things are so messed up? :rolleyes:


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July 18, 2003, 07:26 PM
Oh My...
Sounds like we need a level-headed kidergarten teacher to impose some time-outs!
We are in worse shape than I thought...

Standing Wolf
July 18, 2003, 10:20 PM
Obvious lack of adult supervision.

July 19, 2003, 12:18 AM
Sounds to me like payback time. The Democrats were as bad or even worse when they ran everything. The liberal media just didn't say much, but if you went to small consevative news sources, you could learn about what they did.

July 19, 2003, 01:13 AM
How about we have an old-tyme decimation. Pick one out of every 10 congressthings and execute them for gross incompetence/stupidity/failure/what-have-you. Hang them from a street light out front.

And then make sure that they go back to work.

Since our government seems to be determined to build a political empire, on top of the existant economic empire, we should ensure that those who would rule understand the consequences.

July 19, 2003, 09:24 AM
I love to see politicians attacking each other. We need more folding chairs, gutta-percha canes, and umbrellas available to congressmen. When these morons are beating each other up, they're not taking away anyone's freedoms.

July 19, 2003, 10:16 AM
It will only get worse as power continues to slip from the democrats. At some point the only point of power they will possess is willingness to play by the rules. At that point they will simply not play.

Democrats in Tejas pointed to the future. Can't stop the opposition, just deny them a quorum and all business will stop.

Look for a repeat performance coming to a theatre near capitol hill.

Henry Bowman
July 19, 2003, 10:28 AM
All we need to do is add Jerry Springer into the mix. LOL

No, wait, forget I said that.:uhoh:

July 19, 2003, 11:21 AM
If the Democrats think this childish behavior is gonna get them what they want, they got another think coming.....

Mike Irwin
July 19, 2003, 12:06 PM
Quite frankly, the Republicans, especially the chair, didn't cover themselves in glory on this one, either.

Calling the police? Is the idiot on crack or what?

What authority does he have to call the police to eject any other member of the house from the Library, which is the House's?

July 19, 2003, 02:06 PM
This is the predictable result of scorched-earth political tactics, such as refusal to allow up/down senate votes on judicial nominees, Borking,etc. Both parties are guilty of this, but historically the Repubs have shown themselves reluctant to go for the jugular compared to the Dems. As the Dems ratchet up their defiance of the voice of the electorate, the Repubs seem to be learning to play the same foul game. Not good for anybody. But I lay the ultimate blame at the feet of the Dems, who have been specializing in circumventing Constitutional process for decades. Yes, I know, there are many who think Mr. Ashcroft is doing the same thing, and there may be a point to that, but it's being done through Constitutional procedure, e.g. pres appoints AG, AG passes, proceeds to carry out pres's policies. And pres is answerable at the polls. Dems use unelected judges, bureaucrats, and high-handed methods in Congress to get what the people won't give them.

July 20, 2003, 08:59 PM
If using the word 'niggardly' causes such an uproar, you would think that a democratic MoC using 'fruitcake' as a pejorative would be the biggest scandal since Monicagate...

July 21, 2003, 01:54 PM
We need to get rid of everyone of them and Start from Scratch.:D

July 21, 2003, 03:01 PM
We need to get rid of everyone of them and Start from Scratch.

I will be looking for the TATBO option on the next ballot.....

T hrow
A ll
T he
B ums
O ut

Or else solve debates by the Jer-ry! Jer-ry! Buster method......

Lock them all in a small room, with a limited number of chairs. "Last Man Standing" [or seated in a useable chair] wins.

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