US House Republicans get to work, but Democrats raise concerns | Politics News
Washington DC – The U.S. House of Representatives is back in action after Republican lawmakers unanimously resolved a tired deadlock see who will be the next speaker, the presiding officer of the room.
But Democrats are warning that the House is controlled by the Republican Party with an empowered body far-right backup could spell trouble not only for President Joe Biden’s agenda but also for basic U.S. government functions.
Newly appointed Republican Speaker Kevin McCarthy presided over the boardroom on Monday as lawmakers passed a package of rules to run the House for the next two years – guidelines that Democrats argue will making it harder to pass important legislation, including for the government budget measure.
That package of rules included concessions McCarthy had agreed to to win the speaker spot. His candidacy was blocked 14 times last week by far-right members during his own caucus.
To win the historic 15th vote, McCarthy had to make several concessions, including lowering the threshold for calling a vote of confidence for the speaker. Now, a single legislator can do it.
Monday’s package of rules also includes new regulations that make it harder to pass spending bills. Another concession would make it easier for Congress to cut funding for individual federal agencies and programs.
“What is clear from all of this is that the Republican Party is no longer interested in governance, and this package of rules is ‘show number one,’” Democratic Representative Jim McGovern said in the House of Representatives. institute.
He accused Republican House leaders of sacrificing “personal dignity” to please the far right.
McGovern continued: “The American people sent us here because they wanted us to put the people above politics. “Sadly, this package of rules puts politics first, empowering extremists who only care about their own power.”
‘We learned to rule’
But for many Republicans, the agreement that emerged from the speaker’s stalemate represents a course correction that will put more power in the hands of individual lawmakers and facilitate the debate. larger discussion in the meeting room.
“We will be voting on term limits, balancing our budget, enforcing our immigration laws, etc.,” Florida Representative Matt Gaetz said in a Twitter post praising the new regulations.
A front-runner against McCarthy’s right to speak in the first rounds of voting, Gaetz credits his disapproving colleagues for helping to amend the House rules: “There will be NO of that. That happens if we make concessions, but with these concessions, the House of Commons favors a stronger position.”
Hours before the late-night speaker election, McCarthy himself suggested that the stalemate would help the Republican caucus resolve their differences going forward.
“Because it took so long, now we have learned to manage,” he said.
The first bill aimed at the tax authorities
A majority of the Republican House of Representatives also passed the first bill on Monday – an attempt to revoke a boost spending to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the tax agency of the United States.
McCarthy praised the vote, saying it was the first business imperative because “the government should work for you, not against you”.
The bill passed by a 221 to 210 partisan vote. It would cancel the $80 billion budget increase given to the IRS in the Inflation Reduction Act last year.
But the Republican-led bill has no realistic chance of being passed in the Democratic-controlled Senate, let alone getting Biden’s approval to be signed into law. The Biden administration has threatened to veto the measure, calling it a “reckless” attempt to make it easier for large corporations to evade taxes.
Congress deeply divided
With Congress split between the Republican-led House of Representatives and the Democratic-held Senate, either party’s policy priorities can be passed in a single chamber, but not in a single chamber. success in both.
As a result, the partisan measures have little chance of becoming law, and the current Congress is not expected to pass significant legislation that promotes the partisan background of either the Republican Party or the Democratic Party.
But some analysts were worried that Republican infighting and Monday’s pack of rules is a sign of more alarming things to come. They fear that the House of Representatives may fail to pass mandatory legislation, including government budgets and debt-ceiling bills.
Congress holds the government’s purse strings: Congress allocates money to federal agencies and programs. Appropriations bills are periodically passed by Congress, but when funds run out, the federal government must either pass a new budget measure or close and suspend its functions.
Later this year, Congress needs to pass an increase in the government’s borrowing power, known as debt ceiling. And Democrats warn that, if the Republican-held House of Representatives plays politics on the issue, it could have disastrous consequences for the US and global economy.
Representative Ralph Norman, one of the original Republicans opposed to McCarthy’s leadership efforts, said last week that opposing the debt ceiling increase was a “non-negotiable commodity” for dissidents. right-wing dissidents like him.
Ronald Seyb, a professor of political science at Skidmore University in Saratoga Springs, New York, said it could be “extremely difficult” to pass spending bills and avoid a government shutdown under the new Congress.
He told Al Jazeera: “I don’t remember – at least in my memory – a time when I was more worried about the possibility that it would not just be on the brink of war but over the edge.