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Sunday, January 8, 2012

Congressional Theater

Jan 8th, 2012

And a damn clever bit of it as well. National Journal reports via Yahoo:

"In a odd piece of political gamesmanship, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and other Democrats took to an empty House floor on Friday morning to hammer home that they are in Washington to work on extensions of the payroll-tax holiday and unemployment benefits – whileRepublicans are not.

But before they got too far, Republicans in control of the chamber shut off the microphones , the House was gaveled adjourned for the day, and C-SPAN TV was instructed to quit broadcasting the events. Democrats still believed they had made their point, even if Americans at home weren't permitted to see them doing it.

“Where are the Republicans?,” demanded Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., assistant to the minority leader, suddenly entering the chamber with Pelosi and the three of the five House Democratsassigned to the payroll-tax extension conference committee.

“Mr. Speaker, where are the Republicans?” asked Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., in a refrain that others echoed.

But Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Calif. – serving in the rostrum as the speaker pro tem – immediately declared they were out of order, gaveled the House adjourned over their voices, instructed the stenographer to quit taking down the floor statements for the Congressional Record, and walked away. The microphones were shut down, and C-SPAN TV was instructed to quit broadcasting the events, according to House sources."

It is becoming increasingly common for the GOP leadership to shut down the people's channel when it isn't showing a controlled message. Perhaps, they have confused C-Span's mission with that of News Corp.

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