If you don't speak up you accept what is happening. This site was born out of the mainstream media's inability to cover the news. I am just an American cititzen trying to spread the word in the era of FCC consolidation, post 9/11 Patriot Act hysteria, hackable voting machines and war without end. I rant and post news items I perceive to be relevant to our current situation.
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- Thomas Jefferson
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Democrat DA forces US House Republicans to change their rules
I happened upon C-SPAN last night and there they were, the House Republicans, trying to explain away the reason they are changing their rule disqualifying committee and subcommittee chairs and their leadership from still holding their seats if indicted. One interesting ploy about this is how they would always list leadership last when talking about this. Always committee chairs first. That's part of their plan to try and make it seem that they're not just doing this to protect DeLay, The Leader. For me though the funniest part of all of this is that when the Republicans made these rules back in 1993, before they took over the majority, they did this to try and show that they were less corrupt than the Democrats that were then in charge. In other words they were saying, "If you put us in charge we will hold ourselves to a higher standard than the Democrats or the average citizen". Now with their money man supposedly about to get indicted they are singing a different song. Now they are giving us the whole premise that their chairs and leaders are entitled to the same legal rights as anyone else, now that we are in the majority. Not that anyone is trying to deny them that in the first place. But the point is that back in '93 they were playing politics with the rules to make them out to be holier than thou, thou being the Democrats. Now they are admitting that when they are in the majority it is partisan DA's trying to change their leadership that is forcing them to make this change.
Two more of their tricks. They are trying to say they haven't changed anything just that the person will not have to automatically step down if indicted. Instead they have setup a Steering Committee to look into the charges if someone is indicted. If the committee determines the charges to be " frivolous or politically motivated, it could recommend to the Republican Conference that no action is required". In other words the party that thinks any indictment is frivolous or politically motivated will take no action anymore if there membership is indicted. Oh, maybe if they are a serial murderer or have a homosexual affair then maybe so but otherwise nothing will happen. The other trick is that they are trying to make this about Ronnie Earle and not about Tom DeLay. Amazing a DA in Austin can make the Republicans change their rules. Who knew the Democrats had such power? Josh Marshall has several posts on this at Talking Points Memo and Charles Kuffner has a little more plus Texas editorials on this, Rules are for other people.