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Thursday, October 29, 2015

Paul Ryan Era Begins

By Douglas V. Gibbs

In Article I, Section 2 the United States Constitution instructs that "The House of Representatives shall chuse [sic] their Speaker and other Officers."  Article I, Section 5 states that "Each House [of Congress] may determine the Rules of its Proceedings."  Therefore, when it comes to the Speaker of the House, it is all up to the House of Representatives.

The Speaker is the presiding officer of the House of Representatives.  The one with the gavel.  He (or she) administers oaths, calls the House to order, keeps things orderly, appoints members of committees, and delegates some of the administrative duties (at least when it comes to his or her own party).  It is not necessary for the Speaker to be a member of Congress, but if the Speaker is a member of the House of Representatives, the duties as a Congressman does not stop.  He must still advocate for his district, vote on key legislation, and hold meetings with his constituents.  Traditionally, the Speaker does not necessarily vote on every piece of legislation, but will if the vote is expected to be close.  He also presides over all joint sessions with the Senate because these official gatherings are usually held in the House of Representatives.

Traditionally, the Speaker is the head of the majority party in the House.  The Speaker seeks to ensure the passage of legislation supported by his party.

Paul Ryan, at age 45, has been elected as the youngest Speaker since 1869.  The Republican Party, who has been seeking its identity of late, was able to bring together the different factions to stand behind Ryan, a person that, for the most part, is seen as acceptable by both the conservative Tea Party Freedom Caucus Republicans, and the establishment RINOs.  Ryan's election as Speaker follows the resignation by John Boehner last month.

Nine Republicans, some of them Freedom Caucus members, voted against Ryan, casting their votes instead for Daniel Webster of Florida.  Those conservatives are seen by the Party-First Republicans as being disrupters, though many Tea Party folks that are a part of the voting public see the conservative factions as being the cavalry.

Ryan's history of support for bailouts, unconstitutional federal spending, and certain aspects of amnesty, has made him a less-than-desirable politician in the eyes of the more conservative side of the GOP.  His victory was not a show of support by conservatives, but a sign that of all of the establishment tools, Ryan was the most palatable.

The new Speaker has called for the Republican Party to unite, for the bickering to stop, and for the Republicans to work with Democrats so as to avoid any more government shutdowns.  However, conservatives that truly understand the game know that there is no compromising with the Democrats.  They have nothing to offer to the GOP.  And for that matter, the Tea Party and Conservative factions recognize that infiltrators fill the Republican Party, and to work with many of the "establishment" Republicans who are nothing more than Statist liberal progressive socialist Democrats with an "R" attached to their name, would be as bad as handing this country over to those who wish to destroy it on the other side of the aisle.

In the case of Mr. Boehner, he ran the House of Representatives in a manner very similar to Nancy Pelosi's tyrannical style, forcing bills to the House floor without rank-and-filed input, dictating committee chairs and punishing rebels.  Hardly an "American" way of doing things.  He deserved the criticism he got, and he deserved to be convinced to step down.  The question now, is, will Paul Ryan respect the American System, or act like a mini-dictator too, once he has the gavel in his hand?

The Establishment Republicans see Ryan as their best chance of fixing the division in the party, but if Ryan becomes Boehneresque, or worse, he will receive the same criticisms for his actions, as well.  That is not division, that is holding his feet to the fire.  The Tea Party is there to hold the establishment's feet to the fire, because the Republican Party has been stupidly betraying its conservative platform.  It is about time the Republicans stop fighting with the Tea Party, and embrace the common sense conservatism offered by the Tea Party members, instead.

We'll see.

-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary

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