Floor revolt: No vacation for House Republicans; GOP calls for special session on gas prices; Pence: “Prepared to stay here as long as we can;” Update: Pelosi crackdown?!; “God Bless America”
Scroll for updates…4:05pm Eastern…Pelosi moving to crackdown?!…2:00pm Eastern. 40 GOP congressmen come to the floor. Pence: “We’re prepared to stay here as long as we can”…Live Twitter updates from Rep. John Culberson! “Min Whip Blunt speaking now describing our bill to drill here drill now to get us through the next 10 to 15 years till we can get new tech…12 minutes ago from TwitterBerry…We are speaking without microphones – as though it were 1908 – acoustics of House chamber are good and gallery and you can hear us…Video here…Session ends to the tune of “God Bless America…”
Just got this heads up from a Hill staffer. The Democrats may have gone on vacation, but House Republicans are on the floor today, working on behalf of taxpayers to push energy proposals forward. Nancy Pelosi, meanwhile, is busy hawking her miserably performing book–currently ,1726 on Amazon.com:
From: Stipicevic, John
Sent: Friday, August 01, 2008 11:39 AM
Subject: WHIP FLOOR UPDATE
Although, this Democrat Majority just Adjourned for the Democrat 5-Week Vacation, House Republicans are continuing to fight on the House Floor. Although the lights, mics and C-SPAN camera’s have been turned off, House Republicans are on the Floor speaking to the taxpayers in the gallery who, not surprisingly, agree with Republican Energy proposals.
All Republicans who are in town are encouraged to come to the House Floor.
Update: From the Republican Study Committee, a call for President Bush to convene a special session on gas prices.
Just do it!
Congressman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Chairman of the House Republican Study Committee (RSC), and Congressman Mike Pence (R-IN), former Chairman of RSC, today urged President Bush to call for a special session of Congress after the House adjourned without allowing a vote on comprehensive legislation to develop more American energy and help the millions of Americans currently feeling pain at the gas pump.
The text of their letter is below:
The White House
Washington, D.C. 20500
Dear Mr. President,
The House of Representatives has not taken a vote since January 2007 that would expand domestic energy production. All the while, Americans are hurting. Every time they go to fill up their cars, trucks or tractors they feel the pain at the pump. High gas prices are harming the vitality of our families, the elderly, small businesses, and family farms. Each and every American is affected.
Today the Democrat controlled Congress adjourned for a five-week vacation without taking a vote on bipartisan measures that would lessen our dependence on foreign oil by allowing more domestic drilling on the Outer Continental Shelf. In fact, they adjourned without even allowing time for debate on the subject of drilling.
On July 14, 2008, you took the strong action of lifting the executive order that had banned offshore drilling. In so doing, you said that allowing offshore oil drilling is “one of the most important steps we can take” to reduce the burden of high gas prices. Now, all it would take is an act of Congress for that drilling to begin.
Since Speaker Pelosi has decided not to keep the House in session to allow this vote to take place, we urge you to use the power vested in you by the Constitution to convene an immediate energy special session of Congress. Under Article II, Section 3 of the Constitution, you have the power ‘on extraordinary occasions’ to convene the Congress.
We believe that the energy emergency that has increased the pain felt by Americans when they purchase $4 per gallon gasoline is an extraordinary occasion. We urge you to immediately bring the Congress back into session to do its job and give the bipartisan, pro-drilling majority a vote.
Thank you for your consideration of our request.
Update. 2:00pm Eastern From GOP House leader John Boehner’s office…
In a dramatic revolt against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) refusal to allow Congress to vote on legislation to increase American-made energy and lower gas prices, House Republicans today refused to leave the House floor after Speaker Pelosi adjourned the House for the five-week August break, staying in the chamber to speak directly to Americans watching the historic event unfold above the floor in the House gallery. Even after lights, cameras, and microphones in the chamber were turned off, House Republicans were undeterred, continuing to make speech after speech demanding that Speaker Pelosi listen to the calls of the American people – including those coming from whistling, applauding, and cheering Americans sitting in the gallery – for more environmentally-responsible drilling for oil and gas here at home to reduce the price at the pump. Rep. John Culberson (R-TX) defied the Democratic majority by providing live updates on the protest via Twitter directly from the House floor.
Members participating in the spontaneous uprising included Reps. Roy Blunt, John Boehner, Michael Burgess, John Campbell, Eric Cantor, Shelly Moore Capito, John Carter, Mike Conaway, John Culberson, Charlie Dent, Jeff Fortenberry, Virginia Foxx, Louie Gohmert, Pete Hoekstra, Duncan Hunter, Thaddeus McCotter, Mike Pence, Tom Price, Ted Poe, Adam Putnam, Bill Sali, John Shadegg, John Shimkus, Tim Walberg, and Lynn Westmoreland.
The protest came just minutes after House Republican leaders delivered a letter to Speaker Pelosi demanding that she call the House back into emergency session this month to deal with America’s ever-worsening energy crisis.
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