GOP to House: Party's over
December 1st, 2010
05:56 PM ET
11 years ago

GOP to House: Party's over

Washington (CNN) - The college football bowl season is weeks away from crowning a new national champion, but there will be no congratulatory votes for the winner on the House floor. That's because Republicans are planning to ban most official Congressional commemorations when they take over the chamber in January.

Under new House rules being circulated by the GOP transition team, House Republicans would prohibit resolutions on the floor that congratulate sports teams, recognize anniversaries or birthdays, according to Brendan Buck, spokesman for the transition team. The rule would be part of a series of reforms to House rules in the new session of Congress.

Currently members of both parties offer these resolutions throughout the week for votes on the House floor. These non-binding measures often congratulate the hometown football team that wins the Super Bowl, celebrate the anniversary of a local National Guard unit, or recognize a milestone that is designed to get members of Congress headlines back in their home districts.

This week the House is voting on several such resolutions, including one to honor golf legend "Chi Chi" Rodriguez for his commitment to Latino youth programs, one to support American Diabetes Month, and one supporting a Special Day of Recognition for Parents of Special Needs Children. These bills get abbreviated debate time and cannot be amended, but are usually approved by an overwhelming majority of the House.

In a September speech promising congressional reforms under GOP rule, House Republican Leader John Boehner criticized Congress for wasting too much time on these bills. "With all the challenges facing our nation, it is absurd that Congress spends so much time on naming post offices, congratulating sports teams, and celebrating the birthdays of historical figures," Boehner said.

The new rule proposed by the transition team would prohibit any bill that "expresses appreciation, commends, congratulates, celebrates, recognizes the accomplishments of, or celebrates the anniversary of an entity, event, group, individual, institution, team or government program; or acknowledges or recognizes a period of time for such purposes." It would still allow members of Congress to propose legislation naming post offices in their districts.

"As we are prepared to spend more floor time on open rules and scrutiny over spending bills, and committee time on oversight, we want to do away with these," Buck told CNN.

But Buck noted that the new rule would still allow members to vote on resolutions that offer condolences or non-binding policy resolutions, such as one that condemns an action by a foreign country.

Filed under: House Republicans
soundoff (23 Responses)
  1. J. Samuel Cook

    This is just silly.

    But of course conservatives will somehow point to this as evidence that the Republican House is focused on jobs.

    Glad to know being a Congressman is one of the few jobs on earth where you can be rewarded for doing absolutely nothing, saying no to everything, and, on occasion, making it seem like you're hard at work.

    God bless America.

    December 1, 2010 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  2. Jonathan

    That's because the Republicans don't want voters to remember the names of their colleagues who will be kicked out in 2012.

    December 1, 2010 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  3. Four and The Door

    I like this message from the new Republican House of Representatives. It's time to get to work. There's plenty of our nation's work to be done.

    December 1, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    Symbolic blather. They just want to make sure they have as much of the Congress' time as possible to waste on their wichhunts. This is what they mean by "oversight." When a GOPer is POTUS and they have Congress, these turds don't bother to open their eyes, let alone conduct any "oversight." They wouldn't know oversight if it flew up their bums and laid eggs. Nope. They'll have 3-4 special counsels appointed by March...mark my words.

    December 1, 2010 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  5. mercfan

    So the GOP is doing away with commemorations to give the appearance they are serious and getting down to work on important issues. This is really funny because there is another story posted today that says, the GOP will block all bills the Dems won't go along with. Which is a government double speak for – don't expect them to get anything done the next 2 years.
    One day after the mid-terms, they announced their top priority is to keep Obama from being reelected. In other words, they will do nothing so they can blame the dems for the impasse and get more GOPers in office. So why do away with the commemorations? So they will have more time to do nothing?

    December 1, 2010 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  6. Ronnie

    GOP ... Government Of Partypoopers!

    December 1, 2010 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  7. Edwin

    Wow - what a constructive change... banning something that takes no time.

    December 1, 2010 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  8. j

    even though its of little real consequence, even as a token gesture i like this being scrapped. it will be interesting to see if boehner is as practical on more partisan matters.

    December 1, 2010 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  9. S. In California

    Under new House rules being circulated by the GOP transition team, House Republicans would prohibit resolutions on the floor that congratulate sports teams, recognize anniversaries or birthdays, according to Brendan Buck, spokesman for the transition team.

    I would LOVE to know what these republicans are smoking? Whatever it is – it sure is SOME POWERFUL STUFF! No one in their right mind who is not dead or on a respirator would believe these con artists. What about the prostitution clubs? Will you stop SPENING there? I thought not.

    December 1, 2010 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  10. Denny

    No problem here with this. There's real business to be attended to, and they should stick to doing that. This may free up enough time to actually read bills before they are sent to the floor for voting. Oh wait, that was a Pelosi strategy.

    December 1, 2010 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  11. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    GOP's party is over and guess what, Americans will never see a piece of that cake, unless you're rich.

    December 1, 2010 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  12. the real ib

    Good; with all the things that need to be done to help this country the last thing congress needs to be doing is wasting time and money on voting on things like this. Time to work not play.

    December 1, 2010 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  13. The Village Critic

    My goal is to defeat Mitch McConnell.

    Boycott Kentucky until they remove him from office.

    December 1, 2010 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  14. Marge

    Guess the best thing for the Democrats is to take a page out of the republican play book. Every time any bill for any thing comes up to a vote, after the republicans steal in, is to vote NO NO NO and with each vote NO they should say, according to the republicans during the last two years who ignored the will of the people and now want us to follow the will of the people. I would say it over and over and over for the whole two years the republicans dirty up the house. Post this message CNN or does it call the republicans out for what they are and you can't stand it my post will be held up as per usual by the moderators...tsk tsk tsk

    December 1, 2010 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  15. CBR

    Here we go. The Republicans want to make changes in the rules so that ordinary achievements will not be talked about or voted upon on the House Floor. One privilege will remain – the naming of Post Offices in various districts. Nos just think about that – the Republicans are in the majority and they will continue to politicize the naming of post offices.
    what happens in the post office is in a Democratic district.

    Perhaps Mr. Buck and others were not aware of the gridlock which occurred so often in the last few years. The Republicans were unwilling to compromise and like two-year old children their answer was always NO. This was continued today as unemployment benefits ran our for thousands of Americans at the beginning of this holiday season. Many, many families will be hurt. As we have during this recession, neighbors and friends will be helping these families. The middle class Americans will be called on again to support and provide the necessities for these families.

    This was not the time to hold back funding. This was the time when the hearts of good men and women are filled with joy because their friends, families and strangers came to help them through this crisis. I do hope all of the Republicans who have said no have made large contributions to the various charities in their home states.

    Just remember that Congress is getting a pay raise!!! That money was found.

    December 1, 2010 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  16. kyle

    The World will see again that the house Republicans only care about tax cuts for the rich, and repealing healthcare, and lining their own pockets with corporate greed money.

    December 1, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  17. dwayne

    The republicans have failed already. No new jobs yet. JOBS JOBS We are all tired of these mean and selfish christian republicans. Tax cuts for billionaires- huge deficit. Why do the christian republicans continue to trash poor and middle class people?

    December 1, 2010 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  18. I'm So Glad The Real Americans Are Coming Back to Washington

    Where are the jobs?

    December 1, 2010 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  19. Ryan

    All work and no play makes jack a dull boy

    December 1, 2010 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  20. Brett

    I'm a liberal Democrat, and I suppost these new rules. Stop wasting time on these petty things and get to work!

    December 1, 2010 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  21. Disgusted in Texas

    Well, there are just no words for these assinine Republicans. They have "wasted" two years, refusing to work with the
    Democrats, and, in particular, President Obama while Americans are suffering, No jobs created by the "Bush tax cuts for
    the wealthy" (exept overseas), no time for our Nation's security via the START treaty, no time to for extension of
    unemployment benefits, which by the way, help the economy, but plenty of time for garbage like this. Shame on them,
    shame on all who swallowed their kool aid and voted for them, Tea Party included. You really socked it to the rest of us and
    to yourselves as you are about to find out.

    December 1, 2010 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  22. jeff

    I have finally agreed with a republican idea. I think this may be the first time ever. My god have I lost my mind?

    December 1, 2010 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  23. LJ

    GOP's job could be replaced by a rubber stamp. It takes no brains to do what they do.

    December 1, 2010 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |