After four years in the political wilderness – otherwise known as the minority party – in the House of Representatives, the GOP has now officially passed the threshold to secure the majority. After being on a knife’s edge since Election Day more than a week ago, California’s District 27 was finally called for Republican Mike Garcia, who secured an eight-point victory over Democrat challenger Christy Smith. Although six races still remain, the majority is confirmed, but what happens next?
All the President’s Men – And No One Else …
President Joe Biden offered congratulations to Minority (soon to be Majority) Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) on the win. In a statement, the president wrote:
“In this election, voters spoke clearly about their concerns: the need to lower costs, protect the right to choose, and preserve our democracy… I will work with anyone — Republican or Democrat — willing to work with me to deliver results for them.”
This sentiment echoes an earlier message from Biden in which he essentially informed the incoming House majority that he has certain red lines when it comes to “unity” and added quite the caveat. On Thursday, Nov. 10, he warned:
“And, folks, I’ll always be open to any good ideas, whether it’s Democrat or Republican, to move the country forward… But I’ve also made it really clear that if Republicans try to repeal the power we just gave Medicare to reduce prescription drug costs, I will veto it and not let it happen.
“If Republicans try to walk away from the historic commitment we just made to deal with a climate crisis, I will not let it happen… If Republicans try to cut Social Security and Medicare, I will not let that happen. And if they try to cut taxes for the super wealthy again and the biggest corporations, like they did the last administration, I will not let that happen either.”
As Liberty Nation’s James Fite surmised at the time, “The truth is that Joe Biden will gladly work with any ‘establishment Republican’ (as he called them) who will work with him – meaning, he’ll get along with anyone willing to support his progressive agenda, and no one else.”
Wherefore Art Thou, Nancy?
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is one member most intimately affected by the change in status. Of her 35 years in Congress, 19 of those have been in a leadership position. Coming to the speakership in 2007 as the first woman to hold that title, she has been a powerful force both in the lower chamber and national politics. But what lies ahead now that she is relegated to the minors?
Pelosi’s Deputy Chief of Staff, Drew Hammill, posted soon after the result dropped that the lady in question “has been overwhelmed by calls from colleagues, friends and supporters. This evening, the Speaker monitored returns in the three remaining critical states. The Speaker plans to address her future plans tomorrow [Thursday] to her colleagues.”
It is certainly possible that she will kick this particular can down the road until after the Democrat House leadership elections on Nov. 30.
Bracing for the New Broom
The upcoming Congress will be sworn in on January 3, 2023, and shall most likely be presided over by Kevin McCarthy, who won his party conference nomination on Tuesday. However, he received 188 votes (30 shy of the magic number) from his party, meaning either the rest of Team GOP needs to get on board with him for the final vote once Congress is in session or risk handing the speakership to a Democrat.
On the docket for the new Republican-led House are a number of investigations, including Hunter Biden’s business dealings, the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan, and a deep dive into the findings of the January 6 Committee. All hot-button issues that the lower chamber has managed to avoid over the last two years. McCarthy also warned that on “day one,” moves would be taken to block the addition of 87,000 new IRS agents.
In fact, one might conclude that losing the House, and therefore the ability to control the congressional agenda, is a greater nightmare for a Democratic Party already dealing with an unpopularity crisis than had they lost the Senate.
All opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Liberty Nation.
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