Tuesday, November 30, 2004

GOP does not want Reps convicted of felonies

Here is how the Republicans in Congress are spinning the rule change... For the first time, a member of leadership who is convicted of a felony must step down from that position.

From Rep. Chris Chocola (R-IN), via constituent E.J., from a letter dated November 23rd:

The new Conference rule states that any Republican Member of Congress convicted of a felony must immediately relinquish their leadership post.

(Note: I read the Chocola letter in its entirety several times. No mention of whether he voted for, against, or did not cast a vote. So, if he is a Letter-Writer, and now has written the letter but still has not answered the question, should we put him down as a Refuser? Yup, afraid so, Rep. Chocola. And you earned it yourself. Maybe it has something to do with only getting 54% of the vote?)

And from Jerry Lewis (R-CA), who is now outed as a Yes on the DeLay Rule, via the comments:

One of those rules, proposed by Congressman Henry Bonilla of Texas, will require for the first time that any Republican congressional leader or committee chairman who is convicted of a felony must immediately step down from their post.

Okay, now that we have cleared up whether the GOP wants convicted felons in position of leadership, does anyone think that a member of congressional leadership indicted by a grand jury should, just maybe, leave his or her leadership post temporarily?

Keep the reports coming.


  • If this is how the rule change was sold to them, though, I can see how it's damned if you do, damned if you don't situation. If you vote for the rule change, you'll be voting to allow indicted members to keep leadership positions. If you vote against it, you'll be voting against keeping convicted felons out of leadership positions. Looking at it from the perspective of a politician who wants to get re-elected next term, I'd probably be more afraid of attack ads saying I voted "in favor of having convicted felons in party leadership positions" than I would be of attack ads saying I voted "in favor of indicted members in party leadership positions." I'm not saying politicians should vote based on potential attack ads next election cycle, but I am saying that I think they feel the need to take these sort of things into consideration.

    As a side note: Before the rule change, members in leadership positions weren't required to step down if convicted of a felony?? That's seriously weird. I guess it's never come up before. Or has it? What are the Democrats' rules in this regard? If anyone else knows about this, please leave and comment and enlighten me.

    Anyway, keep up the good work! It's interesting to see how each representative explains their vote. This is a great way to study ethics and perception in politics.

    - E.J.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:36 PM  

  • This was buried in a post earlier (woohoo! we've been busy!) so I'm reposting -- great work guys!

    Guess who said this:"We need new leadership which will act because it is right," he said, "not because they have been caught in cover-ups and scandals. Once again, what we are pointing out here is that we are outraged at the mismanagement of this House, and it is not just this last year. It has been going on for years. It is the arrogance of power, the lack of follow-through, the `Oh, yes, we can push that over in the corner and not address it.'

    yep. Tom Delay -- 11 years ago when he STOOD UP for the rule preventing a Party Leader from holding office after an indictment. Of course, back then, the leader was a Democrat. Guess it doesn't apply to himself.

    use his own words against him

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