House Republicans demonstrated their contempt for democracy today by setting the record for being the most closed Congress in US history.
Rep. Louise Slaughter’s office said in a statement, “As House Republicans vote today on their 45th closed rule of this session of Congress—shutting down the amendment process and excluding the American people’s voice from the legislative process—they will set a record for the most closed rules ever passed and will enter the history books as the most closed Congress in history. This dubious milestone comes in the face of pledges from Speaker Ryan to oversee a more open and inclusive debate process that includes input from all members, majority and minority. By excluding lawmakers from the legislative process, House Republicans are left to pursue a politically driven agenda instead of allowing for commonsense amendments that could actually achieve bipartisan agreement. This divisive approach has empowered the most extreme members of the Tea Party to pursue their radical agenda at all costs—an approach that has shut down the government, threatened our nation’s credit worthiness, and made partisan stalemate the new norm.”
In other words, since House Republicans took control of Congress they have shut down openness and debate with Democrats. House Democrats continue to be frozen out of the process.
Here is what has become of The People’s House since Republicans took over:
As Rep. Slaughter (D-NY) said on the House floor, “It is true that the trend toward more closed rules has been growing over the last 20 years—under the leadership of both political parties. But my Republican colleagues have taken this trend to new heights. The Republican Congress, for example, passed more closed rules in one week in October of 2013 than in an entire year under Democratic control.”
Rep. Paul Ryan talked a big game about changing the House after he was elected Speaker, but far it has been business as usual. House Republicans are suffocating democracy by their refusal to include Democrats in the legislative process. Our governmental system was built on the notion of bipartisanship and compromise, but Republicans won’t even allow open discussion and debate.
Extreme partisanship has destroyed the legislative process. Paul Ryan is saying one thing while doing the opposite as the reason for our broken government is spelled G-O-P.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor, who is White House Press Pool, and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association