The Democrats are considering rolling back the reforms adopted by the U.S. House of Representatives after the Republicans took control in 1995. That means eliminating the term limits for committee chairs and making it even more difficult for the Republican minority to have any input or impact on legislative outcomes in the House. Republicans will effectively be banned from amending Democratic bills, proposing alternative bills or even participating in open debate under motions to recommit. It’s not clear whether open committee hearings or the ban on committee proxy voting are similarly in danger.
Remember all the outrage of how intolerant Tom DeLay’s House was of the Democratic minority? If these rules changes are adopted, Nancy Pelosi’s Democrats will be getting rid of protections for the minority that existed throughtout DeLay’s tenure and the Republican majority. House Republicans leaders have pledged to fight the changes, but votes on these procedural issues tend to be along party lines.
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