House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) strikes again.
Republican lawmakers are in disbelief over a series of rules changes that Pelosi has proposed for the next Congress. According to Reuters, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) charged that the changes, including one that some said would undermine the minority party’s ability to alter legislation late in the game via a so-called Motion to Recommit, “just destroyed over 100 years of representation in Congress.”
According to The Hill, Pelosi and House Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern (D-MA) have also put forth measures to bar members who have been “convicted of crimes related to their House service or election” as part of their sweeping rules change package.
In a press release Friday, Pelosi and McGovern said the package “prioritizes ethics and accountability in the People’s House.”
Accountable and transparent
Other changes to come include making “it a violation of the Code of Official Conduct for a Member, officer, or employee of the House to disclose the identity of a whistleblower,” the press release said, an apparent reference to the actions of two Republican lawmakers who outed the whistleblower whose complaint prompted the lower chamber’s impeachment proceedings into the president in late 2019, according to The Hill.
It would also be “a violation of the Code of Official Conduct for a Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, officer, or employee of the House to disseminate manipulated media, including photos and videos,” Pelosi and McGovern said, and the package would seek to “protect whistleblowers in the House from being retaliated against for providing truthful information.”
Pelosi, for her part, said the changes “will make the House more accountable, transparent and effective in our work to meet the needs of the American people,” according to Reuters.
No tinkering here
In a statement of his own, McGovern said the proposed changes don’t “tinker around the edges.”
“This proposal doesn’t tinker around the edges of ethics reform,” he remarked, according to The Hill. “It contains historic ideas to protect whistleblowers and prevent everything from the undue influence of lawbreakers on the House Floor to the dissemination of ‘deepfakes’ on government accounts.”
The congressman continued: “This proposal also shines a light on those struggling to get ahead in America today and ensures we remain focused on the most pressing issues facing our nation.”
Among those “pressing issues” is a stipulation that “pronouns and familial relationships in the House rules to be gender neutral,” Reuters noted.
As Democrats head into what has shaped up to be the slimmest majority in the House in decades, it’s clear where their priorities lie.