January 3, 2013

House gavels. Speaker election. Boehner re-elected w/ Bachmann casting the 218th vote

Live, here.

update:  Boehner wins re-election as Speaker.  With Michele Bachmann’s voting for him, much to my dismay and sadness.

Unless this vote was a face-saving deal — and Boehner declines or resigns — today, the Republican Party officially died.   Or rather, killed themselves out of cowardice.  And no, I don’t care how many concessions Boehner supposedly made to conservatives in private. It’s about the optics.  And the GOP once again said that the status quo is good enough.

Note the date.  If only for the trivia value.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 11:13am
34 comments | Trackback

Comments (34)

  1. Sounded to me like Michelle Bachman’s vote put Boehner over the top, i.e. was the 218th tally.

  2. Disheartening, isn’t it?

  3. Looking more closely however, I find I’m wrong about that, since evidently the full complement of 435 members can’t be present, so the majority is somewhat less than 218.

  4. Yes, it is. What happened to the motion to obtain a secret ballot, I wonder?

  5. Don’t weep for me, Speaker Boehner.

  6. Yes, it is. What happened to the motion to obtain a secret ballot, I wonder?

    Nobody had the guts to make it: Because everybody would know who the traitor was.

    Besides, he’s gone in two years anyways, so why stick your neck out now?

  7. Looking more closely however, I find I’m wrong about that, since evidently the full complement of 435 members can’t be present, so the majority is somewhat less than 218.

    IIRC, there’s a rule that there must be 218 votes to elect the Speaker. 17 defections would have kiboshed him.

  8. To be fair, the GOP has been on life support for years. Sure, heroic measures were taken with the infusion of new blood by the TEA Party members, but that blood carried antigens. Antigens that were anathema to the antibodies in the body GOP. They attacked and killed the TEA Party before it could get a foothold and begin to nurse the body politic back to health.

    All that’s left to do is shut off the machines and draw the curtains.

  9. You may have the rule better than I Pablo, but if it’s a simple majority of members present and voting, it needn’t be 218. And as it happens, a few members couldn’t vote, as they’re either unavoidably absent (illness) or have given up their seats (Tim Scott), which must be filled by special elections to come.

  10. Nobody had the guts to make it: Because everybody would know who the traitor was.

    There’s a list of those who have already been determined to be the Enemy of The Party. Lack of sack, indeed.

  11. True, sdferr. But again, as I understand it, such rule exists. Wiki mentions it, but does not cite. I’d keep digging, but it’s moot and I can’t find it in me to care anymore. Perhaps I’ll find out what the Kardashians are up to instead.

  12. Well, they might be pussies, but I’m not. In fact, just cut off another friend who suddenly decided that doing some work for me wasn’t cool enough, so she’s going back to school to “Be a counselor… or maybe a socio teacher?” Yeah, that’s what we’ll need more of in Obama 2.0.

    It is weird to be in a country desperate to commit its own suicide.

  13. Lack of sack, indeed.

    Pretty much it. I’m sure there’s more than twenty that privately think Boehner is a disaster. But nobody willing to stand up and say it publically.

  14. Wow. Three votes shy.

  15. Also, don’t forget to check what your personal congresscritter said about the Fiscal Cliff. My own Pete Sessions said, “That was tough, but now we can get serious about spending!”

    Third party vote/money donation here I come!

  16. I have to remain a registered Republican so as to vote against my rep. in the primary. I may wind up voting for a Democrat in the general. That would be a first.

  17. On Twitter, the cowards are applauding themselves for having banded together in their cowardice, and sneering at the unnuanced rubes who just don’t get how DC works.

    Sometimes I get the feeling they’re just content to be the constant, safe, decently-paid voices of the losing side. Job security. Trumps principles.

    Pragmatism.

  18. Let the stampede for the exit to the “big tent” begin.

  19. I will probably continue voting in primary elections, requesting a GOP ballot, but I’ll be as likely to cast monkeywrench votes as not, with special malice directed at federal offices.

    Which, if you ask the non-existent GOP Establishment, means no significant change in my voting behavior.

    Declaring war on the GOP at this point amounts to acknowledging they’ve long since declared war on me, and not much more than that.

  20. We miiight still have a few years left before the violence gets too much to hide. So I can understand betting on being a clueless coward still. I mean, F**** you, but still.

    But with the AlGorezza TV, I’m not entirely sure we have months.

  21. With Michele Bachmann’s voting for him, much to my dismay and sadness.

    The continuum in DC runs from opportunistic hack to full-blown Marxist. No one outside of that is left if they were ever there at all.

  22. Down into the weeds, and after a cursory look at the House Rules (pdf), I think the relevant passage on the question “how many votes carries?” is here (a search on “218″ yielded no result), Rule XX, Voting and Quorum Calls, Ballot votes — 11., p. 34:

    “Ballot votes
    11. In a case of ballot for election, a majority of the votes shall be necessary to an election. When there is not such a majority on the first ballot, the process shall be repeated until a majority is obtained. In all balloting blanks shall be rejected, may not be counted in the enumeration of votes, and may not be reported by the tellers.”

    ***

    So any winning result will be dependent on the total number of votes cast. And I guess this mere majority requirement more or less pertains to all votes, unless they are otherwise specifically required a higher proportion than simple majority, such as, say, a Constitutional amendment (Art. V.) or the like.

  23. I wonder how things might be different if all votes had to be by a majority (or as appropriate, supermajority) of the whole number of seats, whether occupied or not?

  24. So working with The Hill‘s tally, Boehner — 220, Pelosi — 192, Other/Present — 14, we’ve a total of 426 votes cast (9 missing from the full complement of 435), leaving 214 as constituting the majority, contrary to The Hill‘s own baldly incorrect [just as I was initially] statement “Boehner needed 218 votes to win reelection.”

  25. Bachman has become staunchy.

  26. “. . . how things might be different . . .?”

    More encumbered with difficulty, and therefore bearing more potential failures to carry votes, surely. Hence, likely more arm-twisty and horse-tradey than otherwise.

  27. Indeed. Blocking a vote would be easier though, since the quorum would effectively be set at 218 in the House and either 51 or 50+Veep in the Senate.

    Meaning maybe fewer laws passed. Which with this bunch means mostly fewer bad laws passed.

  28. Mmmmm. Gridlock.

  29. Bachman has become staunchy.

    Naah. Bachmann’s just under the common (if mistaken) impression that if she’s nice to them, they’ll be nice to her. She doesn’t yet understand that loyalty is unidirectional.

  30. Newly sworn Senatrixes still pissed off that there are too many swinging dicks in the Senate.

  31. “But he earned 220 votes, or three more than needed to claim the speakership.”

    Heck. It looks like once a thing gets going, it’s easier than not to keep it going, whether it happens to be so or not makes no nevermind. But then the difference between six and three is nothing, only a double, so what should we care if we can’t even count anymore? I mean, three trillion, six trillion, who gives a shit?

  32. Team R doesn’t seem to feel any urgency about charting a new course they want to stick with the failshit one

    and so they shall

  33. Tim Groseclose is puzzled (as we may all be):

    This means that it can be defeated very simply: All that is required is for one member in the chamber to stand up and say “I object.”

    Yet no one did.

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