Jefferson: the rules - and the latest

A couple of useful CRS reports (PDF) suggest that Jefferson is probably going nowhere fast.

 This one outlines the consequences for a rep of being indicted for a felony (and also of being convicted - but let's not get ahead of ourselves!).

Those consequences for Jefferson are - nada!

Another deals with the House rules and practice concerning expulsion of reps.

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Jefferson - read the indictment

Our friends at The Hill kindly linked to the document (PDF).

Pelosi has a holding statement - at least, I hope that's what it is.

I recall - the WJ tag should have it - that there was no reason in the House Rules or precedent to prevent an indicted rep from carrying on as if nothing had happened (except for chairmen of committees, from memory).

No sign so far of the CBC rallying around their brother in distress - as they've done several times in the past since the case first became public.

Tomorrow, when the House reconvenes, I wonder whether they'll give him a standing ovation as they gave him at the start of the Congress?

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Appropriations 'Big Push', SCHIP rescue in prospect

A couple of handy CQ pieces from Friday I wanted to note before I get an early night:

Apparently, June will be Apps Month in the House: and, for starters,

House subcommittees have drafted four of the fiscal 2008 bills: Homeland Security, Military Construction-VA, Interior-Environment and Energy-Water. They are expected to win full committee approval this week.

These bills are around $10bn over the Bush budget number. The idea is to bait Bush to produce an early veto on a Sixpack-friendly bill like homeland security or VA.

If the fight resumes over the motion to recommit - the Dems were supposedly going to kill it after the return from the Memorial Day recess - the timetable may go out the window.

On SCHIP, there are all sorts of plans to go beyond merely covering deficits into expanding coverage to all children without it, with or without provisions to provide the necessary moolah.

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Labor and the Democrats: the Progressive years

The hardest thing in expanding one's historical knowledge to new periods is the bootstrap problem that, in order to understand a period, one has to have a mental schema (or scaffolding, one might say) of the main arcs of the period; but, to have the schema, you need to know a good deal of the period.

Now, my period (if it's right to dignify a historical ragbag with such an expression!) is 1932-64. Anything outside that period, and I'm really superficial!

An excellent example of a bootstrapping piece comes to hand in the form of an essay Negotiating the State: Frank Walsh and the Transformation of Labor's Political Culture in Progressive America by Julie Greene, in a collection Organized Labor and American Politics, 1894-1994 edited by Kevin Boyle.

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Sunday treat: analogising Hillary

Now, I have no dog in the prez fight, and stay well away from the vigorous discussions here enjoyed between supporters of the various front-runners.

But one extended analogy from an Afrospearist rather caught my historical funny-bone: Hillary Clinton in 2008 as Lurleen Wallace in 1966.

George was barred from running for reelection by the Alabama Constitution's eunuch clause. (Check!) And Lurleen was a housewife and mother without previous experience of running for or holding elected office. (Er...not so much!)

Read, as they say, the whole thing.

(He doesn't like Obama either, in case you were wondering.)

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Farm bill: the sectional element

It's generally true that the cowman and the farmer can be friends: wheat and cotton district reps can normally roll logs together and have a gay old time doing so.

This year, we've seen the return of (a version of) PAYGO, so beggar my neighbor becomes an option; even, in a tight spot, a necessity.

The Chesapeake Bay Journal (an alt-monthly, so far as I can see) highlights the issue from its parochial viewpoint, commenting on the Chesapeake Healthy and Environmentally Sound Stewardship of Energy and Agriculture Act (HR 1766):

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Pelosi goes for 'Office of Public Integrity Lite'

We've seen in the current Congress that MCs of both parties are happy to support any measure against corruption, except measures with a chance of working.

Thus, when, during floor action on S 1, senators had a chance to endorse Lieberman's plan for independent investigation of ethics complaints against them, they politely declined - by a 3:1 majority!

On the House side, that time-honored means of punting, the committee, was chosen to review the options.

A Hillpiece yesterday says that, with a perfect appreciation of the situtation, the committee has been delivered of a ridiculus mus:

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Farm bill strategy: the wild rice connection

Rather than start laying down the law about the habits of baboons on the subject of farm bill strategy, I thought I'd just toy with a part of the bill and see where it gets me.

Yesterday, Sally Jo Sorensen scribed a piece on one section of the bill, §123, which preempts state or local law restricting the commercial use of anything that USDA has said is fine and dandy. Like GMOs.

Her particular MN angle is that, last month, the gov signed into law a bill banning (or otherwise restricting the use of) genetically modified wild rice. Apparently, MN Indian tribes lobbied for the provision: some of them have gaming interests, which may make backing their demands with moolah that little bit easier.

MN is not alone in legislating to restrict GMOs: according to the FDL piece she links, there is such legislation (state or local) in force in (parts of) 16 states.

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Energy bills: shaping as three ring circus

I've not been paying much attention to energy legislation, given the competing charms (!) of the seemingly endless Iraq shenanigans.

Well, you can't pay attention to everything; but it's not as if there's not anything to pay attention to.

I've been there a couple of times in the last day or two (here and here), but there's much, much more to keep tabs on.

A Kossack reviewed the situation on May:

  • Energy/global warming bill from Energy and Natural Resources Committee (Bingaman)

  • Energy/global warming bill from Environment and Public Works Committee (Boxer)

  • Automotive fuel efficiency bill from Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee (Inouye)

  • Energy tax incentives bill from Finance Committee (Baucus)

The Boxer bill is (I think) S 1297 - although S 992 has actually been reported out by Environment (he doesn't give the bill number, damn his eyes!); S 357 is the Commerce bill (he gives the number for that - go figure); S 349 is the only likely bill to have been reported out of Finance.

There's a CRS report from May 1 on energy legislation in the 110th; and another on S 1321 as it was reported out. There's also committee report on S 1321 - get the PDF version via THOMAS: even though the byteage is bigger, reading a footnoted text in PDF is much less of a braincrusher. (The content is quite enough of one, thank you!)

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Obama on coal-to-oil

It looks like energy is going to be one of a growing number of areas of heavy legislative production this Congress (my piece yesterday).

Hardly a surprise, then, to find that Brer Obama should be showing a bit of leg to the coal boys (IL produces a lump or two) in cosponsoring two bills from Bunning (KY adds a lump or two itself) supporting the conversion of coal to oil (S 154 and S 155).

Got the tip from one skirmish in the ongoing ECO Wars:

Barack Obama co-sponsored, the Coal-to-Liquid Fuel Promotion Act of 2007 last week...

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