Pelosi Changes House Rules to Squelch Republicans
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)
By Brian Freeman | Wednesday, 06 January 2021 09:38 AM
The Democrats have gotten rid of a long-standing House rule, known as “motion to recommit,” that permits the minority party to change legislation on the floor before a vote.
A Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial condemned the move, which the Democrats carried out this week as the majority party passed the rules that will govern the chamber for the next two years.
The editorial said that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi feared that, without a rule change, the GOP could force Democrats to cast votes on controversial issues that may harm them politically in the next election, especially moderate members, given the rise of the party’s radical progressive wing.
The GOP never made a similar move when they controlled the majority, with Republican Rep. Tom Cole pointing out that “This is a right that has been guaranteed to the minority for well over a century. With today’s changes, the majority is seeking to silence views they are afraid of.”
That change was not the only damage done by the Democrats, according to the Review-Journal, as Democrats also essentially eliminated a requirement that legislation which boosts the deficit be offset with cuts elsewhere.
Although the previous rule was clearly not working, since the deficit was booming regardless of which party was in control of the House, “the symbolism here is obvious and will allow Democrats to offer budget-busting legislation on a wide array of dangerous progressive priorities without concern for the long-term fiscal ramifications," the editorial stated.