Conservatives have been pressuring Boehner to adhere to the unwritten “Hastert Rule” — named after former Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) — that says no bill should come to the House floor unless it has the backing of a majority of a chamber’s majority party.
Rohrabacher said if Boehner moves forward with a vote on immigration reform without a Republican majority, it would be a “betrayal” of his party.
“I would consider that a betrayal of the Republican members of the House and a betrayal of the Republicans throughout the country,” Rohrabacher said on World Net Daily radio. “If Boehner moves forward … and permits this to come to a vote even though the majority of Republicans in the House — and that’s if they do — oppose what’s coming to a vote, he should be removed as Speaker.”
Iran’s ruling theocracy was unable to overcome its notorious infighting and unite behind a single candidate in Friday’s presidential election, which has suddenly boosted the prospects of the lone moderate in the race and rekindled interest among some who had planned to boycott.
A cleric and former nuclear negotiator with only modest reform credentials, Hassan Rowhani stirred little enthusiasm when he announced his candidacy in April. Even when he was one of only two centrists to survive the vetting of the conservative, cleric-controlled Guardian Council, he was given little chance of drawing more than a sliver of the vote.
But with the withdrawal earlier this week of Mohammad Reza Aref, the only other candidate not thoroughly beholden to the religious hierarchy under supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Rowhani is now seen as having a shot at emerging high enough in the six-candidate field to advance to a June 21 runoff.
Aref, a Stanford-educated academic who was vice president under former President Mohammad Khatami, dropped his presidential bid at Khatami’s urging to strengthen Rowhani’s chances and give voters tired of Iran’s ravaged economy and international isolation a viable alternative to the status quo.
The United States faces a crisis in our political system because the Republican Party, particularly in the House of Representatives, is no longer a normal, governing party.
The only way we will avoid a constitutional crackup is for a new, bipartisan majority to take effective control of the House and isolate those who would rather see the country fall into chaos than vote for anything that might offend their ideological sensibilities.
In a democratic system with separated powers, two houses of Congress, split between the parties, a normal party accepts that compromise is the only way to legislate. A normal party takes into account election results. A normal party recognizes when the other side has made real concessions. A normal party takes responsibility.
By all of these measures, the Republican majority that Speaker John Boehner purports to lead is abnormal. That is the meaning of his catastrophic failure to gather the votes for his “Plan B” proposal on the “fiscal cliff.” Many of his most radical members believe they have a right to use any means at their disposal to impose their views on the country, even if they are only a minority in Congress.
Jubilant Libyan voters marked a major step toward democracy after decades of erratic one-man rule, casting their ballots Saturday in the first parliamentary election after last year’s overthrow and killing of longtime leader Moammar Gadhafi. But the joy was tempered by boycott calls, the burning of ballots and other violence in the country’s restive east.
In the capital Tripoli, residents turned out in droves to cast votes for the 200-seat legislature. Lines began to form outside polling centers more than an hour before they were scheduled to open. Policemen and soldiers were guarding the centers, searching voters as well as election workers.
“I have a strange but beautiful feeling today,” said dentist Adam Thabet, waiting outside a polling center. “We are free at last after years of fear. We knew this day was coming, but we were afraid it could take long to come.”
Colmes then pressed Derbyshire on whether women should have the right to vote. “Ah…” Derbyshire sighed, attempting to dodge the question initially. “I’m not putting forward a political program here,” he said. But then Derbyshire slowly began to open up:
DERBYSHIRE: Among the hopes that I do not realistically nurse is the hope that female suffrage will be repealed. But I’ll say this - if it were to be, I wouldn’t lose a minute’s sleep.
COLMES: We’d be a better country if women didn’t vote?
DERBYSHIRE: Probably. Don’t you think so?
COLMES: No, I do not think so whatsoever.
DERBYSHIRE: Come on Alan. Come clean here [laughing].
COLMES: We would be a better country? John Derbyshire making the statement, we would be a better country if women did not vote.
DERBYSHIRE: Yeah, probably.
Derbyshire reasoned that we “got along like that for 130 years.” Colmes countered by asking if he also wants to bring back slavery. No, Derbyshire responded, “I’m in favor of freedom personally.” Colmes noted that freedom didn’t extend to women’s right to vote, however. Derbyshire said, “Well, they didn’t and we got along ok.”
Monday is election day in the Libyan city of Misrata. This is the city’s first vote since the fall of dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Misrata residents are electing a 28-member local council. (Feb 20)
Nationally, the presidential campaign is being waged on the issues of jobs and the economy, but here in Iowa, an entirely different battle is unfolding.
In the competition for the highly influential evangelical vote, abortion and gay rights are at the forefront as Republican candidates try to assure voters of their own convictions and sow doubts about those of their rivals.
Candidates are working under the radar in private meetings with influential pastors, and occasionally taking the fight public. Several this week pounced on Herman Cain’s statement that although he opposes abortion under any circumstance, such decisions should be left to the mother, not the government.
“A lot of behind-the-scenes wooing and romancing is going on,” said Ralph Reed, chairman of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, which will host a forum Saturday that will be attended by nearly every Republican candidate. “The reason why is fairly obvious: If someone underperforms among that constituency, arithmetically, it becomes very difficult to end up in the top one or two places” in Iowa.
Suppressing the black vote and bingo the GOP way.
Thompson also brought up Beason’s reference, while wearing an FBI wire, to African-Americans as “aborigines” (a comment he later apologized for).
“The court finds that Beason and Lewis cooperated with the F.B.I. in order to secure political advantage. The evidence at trial showed that black communities in Alabama tend to support electronic bingo. The evidence further demonstrated that black voters tend to be Democrats,” Thompson said. “Indeed, Beason’s and Lewis’s scheme was predicated on their belief that blacks supported electronic bingo and Democratic candidates.”
Thompson continued: “It is, perhaps, unsurprising that politicians have political motives to disrupt and defeat legislation advanced by opponents. But Beason, Lewis, and other influential Republican politicians did not target Democrats generally in their opposition to SB380; they plainly singled out African-Americans for mockery and racist abuse.”
“Beason’s and Lewis’s statements demonstrate a deepseated racial animus and a desire to suppress black votes by manipulating what issues appeared on the 2010 ballot,” Thompson said. “Lawmakers who harbor such sentiments lack the integrity expected from elected officials.”
Thompson also dismissed the Justice Department’s contention that “the issue of racism is irrelevant to the crimes alleged in the indictment” because Thompson said “the issues of motive and bias are directly relevant to evaluating the credibility of the government’s cooperating witnesses.”
A general strike is under way in Greece, grounding flights, halting most public services and shutting offices.
The 48-hour strike comes as parliament prepares to vote on the latest round of austerity measures, including more tax hikes, pay cuts and job losses.
Tens of thousands are protesting nationwide, with some clashes and tear gas reported in Athens.
Greece is struggling to reduce a huge government deficit amid fears it may default and set off a eurozone crisis.
The EU and IMF have demanded tough cuts in return for two bailouts.
The pace of protests in Greece has been increasing for several weeks, with lightning strikes across virtually every sector of the economy.