Kevin McCarthy, House Republican leader, and ingratiating toad has had three truly shitty days at work. His cherished dream of House Speaker has been denied him 11 times by a score of rabid reactionaries who want more than he can give — and as of this morning, he had given them everything. He had surrendered to the mob and committed to reducing the House Speaker to a figurehead with less authority and influence than a Russian opposition leader.
It was to no avail. The never-Kevins are just that. And as long as five of them vote that way, McCarthy will be nothing more than a head of hair, whining at the injustice of it all. Even Trump’s overtime plea to the dissidents to let McCarthy be the guy was dismissed without comment by some of his heretofore closest allies — including Florida Man Gaetz and Baretta Barbie Boebert.
Now even Ginni Thomas has piled on. The SCOTUS spouse with the hots for autocracy has publicly accused McCarthy of dictatorial indifference to the foot soldiers of democracy occupying the far right of the far right. She is a signatory to an open letter authored by the Conservative Action Project, which outlines her condemnation of McCarthy’s nose-in-the-air indifference to the poor patriots wishing to restore the People’s House to its rightful owners.
“Months ago, these members made clear that this established way of doing things was no longer acceptable. They made public a series of proposed reforms designed to democratize the House – to engage the broader membership in legislating, and bring accountability back to the People’s House.
Rather than engage them in a good faith negotiation, Rep. Kevin McCarthy has instead maligned both the requests and the messengers. He has publicly and through proxies leveled attacks against members of his own party, including threatening to deny committee assignments for those who continue to oppose him. Moreover, he has failed to answer for, or commit to halting, his coordinated efforts in the 2022 elections to promote moderate Republican candidates over conservatives.”
What Thomas refers to as “democratize the House” is a scheme by which any member, at any time, can bring the proceedings to a halt. A Republican party that gets little done even when the rule book favors action would become a temple to inaction. Which, of course, is what the tear-it-all-down pseudo-constitutionalists want in the first place.
After some boilerplate aspersions complaining that the nasty Mr. McCarthy has been mean to the well-intended insurrectionists, Thomas criticizes him for backing mainstream candidates over the ultra-MAGAs. She is under the Orwellian delusion that the reason crazy failed in the 2022 election was that it was not crazy enough. And Thomas’s idea of “moderate” seems to be anyone to the left of Kim Jong-un.
Thomas then completely loses the plot. She may love the Constitution but, at best, she has little idea of what it says. And she is wrong about the duties of the Speaker.
“Because of this, he has thus far failed to garner the 218 votes necessary to lead the House GOP conference in three separate rounds of voting. The job of the Speaker is to garner consensus among disparate factions of the party, and unite them.
These members represent the millions of voters across the country who are disgusted with the business-as-usual, self-interested governance in Washington. We stand behind them and beside them in their courageous efforts to find a Speaker of the House who will represent the interests of conservatives. We encourage more conservative members to join their ranks.”
The Constitution does not address political parties and therefore they have no constitutional weight. In article 1, section 2, paragraph 5, it makes its only mention of the Speaker,
“The House of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment.”
The Speaker is not a party position – the title holder is the leader of the House. The leader of the House Republicans is the Majority Leader, currently Steve Scalise. On the Democratic side, the head of the party is the Minority Leader, Hakim Jeffries.
Not that the Speaker is non-partisan. Speakers have always favored their party. But where Thomes goes wrong is in writing,
“The job of the Speaker is to garner consensus among disparate factions of the party, and unite them.”
It is not the Speaker’s job to unify the party — although they may choose to do so in their spare time. The position’s job description (courtesy of govinfo.gov) is as follows,
“Role of Speaker The Speaker is the presiding officer of the House and is charged with numerous duties and responsibilities by law and by the House rules. As the presiding officer of the House, the Speaker maintains order, manages its proceedings, and governs the administration of its business.”
Thomas completes her foray into fantasy when she says that the GOP must find
“a Speaker of the House who will represent the interests of conservatives.”
Now she is even denying the 90% of the House Republicans, who voted for McCarthy, a right to the Speaker of their desire just so the 10%, the whiny bastards, can be awarded their undemocratic choice.
That should come as no surprise. Ginni Thomas believes leaders should always be picked by a minority of the voters — as long as those leaders are warriors for convenient anarchy.
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