Hoyer: Arrogant Republican Partisanship Is Detrimental To Democracy

For Immediate Release:

April 13, 2005

Contact:Stacey Farnen Bernards
(202) 225 - 3130

 WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) made the following statement today at a press conference with Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (NV), House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA), and Senator Debbie Stabenow (MI), highlighting Republican abuses of power in Congress.

“Republicans run the most closed and bitterly partisan House in the history of our country, by enforcing closed rules that stifle debate, having sham conference committees that are irrelevant and holding votes open to achieve pre-ordained results.

“When arrogant partisanship is the name of the game, the American people lose and the special interests win.

“Nowhere is this more evident than in the complete and total breakdown of the ethics process in the House. While allegations of unethical behavior swirl, there is no process in the House to determine right from wrong, and truth from lies.

“And for the first time in history, Republicans forced through partisan rule changes in the House Ethics Committee. The former Republican Ethics Committee Chairman, Joel Hefley, who was purged by Republican leaders for doing his job, and the ranking Democrat, Alan Mollohan, wrote in the Washington Post today:

“There should be no misunderstanding of what is at stake here, for members and for the House as an institution. In the days and weeks to come, all members will need to decide whether they wish to continue to have a credible, effective ethics process, and to then consider the actions and conditions necessary for such a process to exist.”

“Democrats have made it clear where we stand. It is now up to Republicans to decide what kind of House they will run.

“If Republicans do not make the right choice, the American people, in all of their wisdom, will surely refuse to allow the people’s House to be run by out-of-control autocrats willing to abuse their power.”

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