Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
Here is an "inside baseball" analysis of the current Tea Party government shutdown and hostage taking over the federal debt ceiling that most political reporters have failed to report, probably because procedural rules are not as sexy as provocative soundbites from politicians. As Democrats seethe over GOP tactics, video over rules change goes viral:
In a sign of how angry Democrats are over the government shutdown, a video Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) has posted of an obscure rules debate has gone viral.
The video — which has already attracted more than 702,000 views since
being posted to YouTube on Saturday — shows Van Hollen engaging in a
parliamentary inquiry with Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), who was in the speaker’s chair at the time. The two men
discussed why Democrats could not bring up a Senate amendment that would
provide funding to return the government to normal operations.
Normally an individual lawmaker would be able to force a vote on a
bill where there is a dispute between the House and Senate, but on Oct.
1, House Republicans passed a resolution, H. Res. 368, altering the
rules to make that impossible.
“The Rules Committee under the rules of the House changed the
standing rules of the House of the to take away the right of any member
to move to vote to open the government and gave that right exclusively
to the Rep leader, is that right?” asked Van Hollen, the top Democrat on
the House Budget Committee.
“The House adopted that resolution,” Chaffetz replied.
Pressing the point, Van Hollen asks, “Why were the rules rigged to keep the government shut down?”
While House leaders of both parties have sometimes changed the rules
of the House by a majority vote during pitched political battles, this
particular procedural move is much more rare.
At the end of the exchange, Chaffetz denies Van Hollen’s attempt to
force a vote on the Senate measure, prompting Van Hollen to retort,
“Well, Mr. Speaker, democracy’s been suspended.”
Here is the viral video.