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Dear Mr Reich, why do you deny democracy so?

In exchange for backing a relatively moderate Republican such as Fred Upton or David Joyce as speaker, Democrats should demand they get equal seats on committees

We’ve just had an election. R won more than D. Why do you wish to put aside this democratic decision?

16 thoughts on “Dear Mr Reich, why do you deny democracy so?”

  1. Its unlikely to take two months to sort out who is going to be speaker, but it’s still fun watching the yank politicians argue about something that no one else cares about but them.

  2. “So you get to pick some weak pussy who’ll do exactly what we want, and also give us more power so we’ll get everything what we want, while you get to deal with your angry constituents wondering why you betrayed them yet again. What a deal! Just sign here, Mr Conservative.”

    Idk, Robert. Maybe you should try lying next time.

  3. “All anyone needs to be speaker is 218 votes (or a majority of all members present), regardless of party.”

    Well, that’s something those enthusiastic Rs will have to keep in mind. Obviously they should extract as much as they can out of McCarthy (or whomever) to benefit their position, but there will come a limit at which something like Reich’s scenario may play out.

    And it would be entirely democratic – the result of the election was the overall membership of the House. If the majority party won so narrowly that it is beholden to a small but vociferous subsection then it’s also subject to other sections making deals with the minority party.

  4. They’ll probably get away with something like this.

    To paraphrase Mark Steyn; when in the majority Democrats exercise power, Republicans merely hold office.

  5. Total bollocks, of course. There is nothing undemocratic about this. He proposes a price.. if they want the votes, that (he suggests) should be the price. The Republicans would be welcome to reject it and continue to try and sort things themselves.

    Elected officials doing legitimate deals accords the aisle is not undemocratic. And, be real, the split in congress essentially 50:50.. that’s certainly the closest representative split you could do of any committee that isn’t comprised of the entire house.

  6. PJF – I’m honestly unsure what compromises they can expect when dealing with people who illegally use the FBI to destroy their political enemies, and who regard flyover proles as some sort of disgusting species of talking monkey who should be jailed for a over a year without charges over peaceful protesting.

    Are TPTB gonna suddenly not do wacky net zero bullshit, state-sanctioned race-baiting, millions of illegals swarming over the border, mandatory weird perversions for the kids, and the ever-popular endless foreign wars option?

    Doubt it. But the Yanks have been here before, in the Bleeding Kansas era. This is a passive aggressive version of the same dynamic. Is there anything in game theory that advises what to do when the guy across the table from you is a literal sociopath who wants you dead?

  7. Is there anything in game theory that advises what to do when the guy across the table from you is a literal sociopath who wants you dead?

    Given that you’re so desperate that we compromise with Putin and Xi so we can retain our economic comforts, I guess you think there is, Steve.

  8. So many commentators say this shows that the Republicans aren’t fit to rule. In reality it isn’t any different than a parliamentary government trying to form a coalition. Look for this to become common if we adopt proportional representation.

  9. PJF – Given that you’re so desperate that we compromise with Putin and Xi so we can retain our economic comforts, I guess you think there is, Steve.

    I spose that’s the crux of our disagreement: I don’t see Putin, Xi or any of the other Johnny Foreigners as being much of a threat to us at all. They may be enemies of the British government, but they’re not my enemies.

    Also, I believe they’re agreement-capable, because they’re not very ideological. They’re part of what neocons used to scoff at as the “reality -based community”.

    I think the respective histories of these countries since the end of the Cold War bears that out. Our own behaviour since we defeated the USSR has been appalling. The rest of the world is starting to see the collective West as a gang of insane murderer-perverts who want to bomb and/or groom their children, and they’re absolutely right.

    I’m sure you disagree.

    But are the Democrats, or even the GOP establishment, agreement-capable? Can they ever be trusted to live up to their end of any bargain? Have a read of VDH’s thoughts if you have a minute:

  10. McCarthy has already been making deals with his fellow republicans, and many of the holdouts have already said they are open to changing their mind once he does so. That seems a tad more likely than winning over leftists who were willing to consistently vote for an election denier. It’s not even like Liz Cheney or Adam Kinzinger are still available. No matter what, Biden will be a lame duck President from here on out.

    The only reason McCarthy keeps falling short, is because these votes keep happening immediately after one another. When you only allow about 20 minutes of pitches before voting again, it’s no wonder nobody chooses any differently.

  11. Actually, I think what we’re seeing is democracy. And if Democrat votes are needed to get a Republican speaker elected, well that’s democracy too. Because the electorate votes for their representatives and their representatives then elect a speaker. And as long as the numbers add up, whether with Republicans, Democrats or a strange mixture of both, that’s democracy.

  12. With PR the wrangling is largely done before the election.

    This sort of malarkey only occurs with surprise results, regardless of system. Or with countries that are irredeemably fractured (Belguim), so that no system would make any difference.

    NZ has PR, and we have never had worse than your Conservative-LDP wrangling.

  13. “With PR the wrangling is largely done before the election.”

    You’ve said this before, and its just not true. Its very rare for a true coalition to be agreed before a PR election. The parties may have loose affiliations and unspoken ‘If we both do well, we’ll scratch each others backs’ agreements, but formal ‘Here’s our joint manifesto’ pre election coalitions are rare in PR. And the real wrangling takes place after the election. In the Welsh Assembly elections a couple of years ago the negotiations between Labour and Plaid Cymru took about 6 months.

  14. Xi ‘agreement-capable’ Steve? Given his ‘unofficial’ sanctions against Aussie trade, I don’t think I agree with you.

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