Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Priorities Of House Republicans -

1. Retroactive telecom immunity.

2. Failing that, heavily armed communities.

Not a priority -

1. Public housing.

Today, the House debated H.R. 3521, the Public Housing Asset Management Improvement Act of 2007. According to a summary from the Congressional Research Service, the bill concerns a number of rules regulating public housing authority (PHA) management and PHA asset management.

The fun part was when Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) moved to recommit the bill to the Financial Services Committee with instructions to amend the bill by substituting to become S. 2248, the FISA amendments bill that includes retroactive immunity for telecom companies that participated in George Bush's warrantless wiretapping of Americans program.

That motion was determined to be out of order because the proposed amendment wasn't relevant to the underlying bill. Rep. Smith moved to appeal the chair's ruling to the whole House; the whole House voted to table the appeal by a vote of 218 - 195, with the Reps voting mostly along party lines. (AZ delegation: Pastor, Mitchell, Grijalva - Yea; Renzi, Shadegg, Franks, Flake, and Giffords - Nay)

After that, under the rules of the House, the Republicans could still make a motion to recommit, and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) did so.

Her motion included instructions "inserting provisions that state that the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development shall not accept as reasonable any fees for enforcing any provision of a dwelling lease agreement or other similar agreement that requires the registration of or prohibits the possession of any firearm that is possessed by an individual for his or her personal protection or for sport the possession of which is not prohibited, or the registration of which is not required, by existing law."

Further proceedings on that motion, as well as the underlying bill, were postponed (not sure why yet.)

Nice to see that even with a week off to think about the error of their ways, the House Republicans still place corporate interests and ideological purity above human interest.

Wonder who they're going to blame when they have their butts handed to them in November? Undocumented immigrants?

...Oh wait - undocumented immigrants don't vote.

It should be noted that after regular legislative business was completed that Trent Franks (R-AZ2) took to the floor of the House to talk about the significant issue of the day.

Which, given that it was Trent Franks speaking, of course that issue was abortion.


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