Where do I even begin? Laying some ground work for people that are somehow unaware I guess. So, brass tacks: When a new House of Representatives is voted into office those delegates vote amongst themselves on who should run proceedings. Ordinarily this is pretty straightforward in the American 2 party system. The party with the majority picks who should lead them and they get the position, simple. But this year, for the first time in 100 years, it wasn’t simple.
The vote requires a majority of all present, not just a “simple majority”. What’s the difference? A simple majority is just “who got the most votes?” whereas what is needed in this vote is more than 50% of the possible votes. And no one has gotten that… for going on 12 votes at time of writing. With the current system these votes will continue until someone gets the required number of votes. And nothing else can be done until that is accomplished.
So why are we here? What happened that brought the Republican Party to grid lock? Two things. First, their majority is slim, only a handful of people. Second, the most extreme Right Wing members have realized that this gives them power. They refuse to allow anything to happen until they get “what they want”. So what is it they want?
If I had to sum it up I would say they want two things. First, unearned power. They, some of the most junior members of the House, want power handed to them on a silver platter. Power over the speaker, power over comities, power over their party. If it is a type of power they think they can get, they are demanding it like spoiled children screaming on the floor. Second, they want immunity from consequences. They want to be as vile as they want and for no one to be able to hold them accountable. So they demand the neutering of the agencies that would hold them accountable.
And the crazy part? The truly bat shit insane bit? The Republicans are giving in to these demands, slowly but surely. AND IT STILL ISN’T APPEASING THEIR TASTE FOR BLOOD! They still want more. And they are willing to hold the House of Representatives hostage until they get it. So, what should be done?
Well… in a rational society, with rational politicians, the Republicans would see if they could get the few votes they need from somewhere else. Say, the Democrats? Show an ability to reach across the aisle. Show some actual leadership ability. And probably not give up as much as the extremists are demanding. Or perhaps the Democrats try and break a few Republicans off to get a candidate enough votes themselves. Completely undercutting the Republican “leadership”.
But we do not live in a rational society, with rational politicians. And the Republicans have proven they are completely willing to damage the republic for a political stunt. So I expect this to go on for weeks… when do we start playing the Benny Hills theme and sending professional clowns to the House? As opposed to the unprofessional ones that were voted into office.