November 19, 2014

Rules are rules. The same rules for everybody.

No exceptions, says the Party of Empathy. 

I agree with Pelosi's position. But after all the "war on women" junk from the Democratic Party in the last few years, I do like seeing her suffer the abuse for her failure to accommodate Tammy Duckworth. Duckworth served in Iraq, had both legs amputated, is now heavily pregnant and following medical advice not to travel, and she wants to vote by proxy. Pelosi says no exceptions to the rule against voting by proxy.

Of course, she's right! How could the exceptions be managed in the future? What is commensurate with 2 amputated legs and a pregnancy? Oh, the horrific calculations that would be required! Death of a child plus cancer? Death of 2 children plus advanced cancer with chemotherapy?

84 comments:

Dave Schumann said...

Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.

In this case, the rule is, thou shalt accommodate the pregnant and the disabled. In this case, the Dems are absolutely "right" as if that means anything (it doesn't, today). This has always been the rule and there are other examples of reps in pitiful circumstances who didn't get to vote.

But -- and this is the key -- businesses and individuals don't get that freedom, the freedom to apply a rule even when it comes down hard on the pregnant or the disabled. They have to ditch their rules and upend their procedures at great expense -- no accommodation is unreasonable.

So, let 'em stew in it. The Dems deserve absolutely no fairness. Shove their faces into it until the party breaks apart at the seams; then maybe we'll try the civility bullshit after the slavery party's been broken up.

Edmund said...

Many of the rules in Congress are outdated in a world with fast travel, overnight delivery, and videoconferencing. In fact, Congress could do much of their business by videoconference from home - most hearings, committee meetings, etc. Getting together for a few days every other month in person to vote is about all I would require that they do in person.

Hagar said...

Duckworth is known to support the opponent of Mrs. Pelosi's candidate.

Mrs. Pelosi runs her caucus by Baltimore rules, which do not include granting favors to the opposition.

Anonymous said...

Rules are rules.

Unless you're King Putt and want to give Amnesty out as a gift to illegal aliens.

Unknown said...

I don't know enough to understand why this is an issue, so other than "rules are rules," what is the fundamental issue? Why should this be a rule?

and why does AA agree with Pelosi?

The Drill SGT said...

Well, I suspect that Tammie may want to make sure she gets there early next Congress to vote on the new dem Leader...

MadisonMan said...

How did she campaign?

Seeing Red said...

It's equality.

Sigivald said...

I'm sure "no exceptions" will be accepted gracefully as a defense the next time the Republican party does anything that might somehow look like it's making a woman unhappy, yes?

Right?

I mean ... obviously?

(Edmund: Except for the most important thing Congress does - feeling and looking important!)

mikeski said...

heavily pregnant

"Heavily"?

Hagar said...

It is just about the old guard fending off dissension in the ranks.

There is going to be a lot more of this in the months to come.

jr565 said...

Rules are rules unless of course its our laws on the books dealing with immigrants. Or any other laws on the books that Obama and the libs flaunt.

MadisonMan said...

Heavily

That that's one of my favorite descriptions of the degree of pregnant-ness. You can just see the pregnant woman standing (or not, in this case), putting her hands on her back, and moaning in exhaustion.

jr565 said...

Remmber when Gavin Newsome ignored the rules to marry gays?

The Drill SGT said...

mikeski said...
heavily pregnant

"Heavily"?


In common usage it means, "way far along" :)

The Drill SGT said...

MadisonMan said...
How did she campaign?



I suspect in a wheelchair in a suburban Chicago district that went 60-40 for Teh O

Big Mike said...

Democrats never heard of Skype? Which century are they living in?

gerry said...

Members and aides are privately seething over what they see as Pelosi’s latest attempt to stack the deck against Rep. Frank Pallone Jr., D-N.J., who is running for ranking member on the Energy and Commerce Committee against Pelosi’s closest friend and fellow Californian, Rep. Anna G. Eshoo...The Energy and Commerce race is expected to be incredibly close, where every vote will matter — and Duckworth was a public supporter of Pallone.

Scott M said...

This is horseshit. The "rules are the same, the rules for everybody" didn't apply back in 2008 when Michigan and Florida (was it FL?) delegates didn't get their collective shit together prior to the Democratic convention.

Goalposts were moved to accommodate then. Someone should remind Pelosi of that.

Scott M said...

Ditto the same party's Lion of the Senate. The rules for filling vacated Senate seats in Massachusetts were that the governor got to pick...until it was Teddy himself that was vacating under a Republican governor. Oh, no, then the rules don't apply. Then it's appeals to the "people" and "they should decide" not the governor...by the rules.

Again...horseshit on fire.

Brando said...

What's the purpose of preventing votes by proxy? What is the evil that is being prevented by this rule?

Not that I think a rule should be changed just because of a hard case, but why is this rule worth fighting over?

Scott M said...

I'm sure "no exceptions" will be accepted gracefully as a defense the next time the Republican party does anything that might somehow look like it's making a woman unhappy, yes?

Therein lies the only possible silver lining and I'm sorry that it's come at Duckworth's expense. The very next time something comes up, Frau Pelosi's own words can be thrown right back in her face.

Brando said...

"Ditto the same party's Lion of the Senate. The rules for filling vacated Senate seats in Massachusetts were that the governor got to pick...until it was Teddy himself that was vacating under a Republican governor. Oh, no, then the rules don't apply. Then it's appeals to the "people" and "they should decide" not the governor...by the rules."

The Democrats in Massaholia have been all over the place on this rule, depending on whether the GOP has the Governor's seat. It was great to see them have it backfire when Kennedy's seat came open and because they'd changed the rule (which used to let the governor pick the replacement, but was inconvenient because the GOP had a 16 year hold on the governorship) allowing the public to vote on it, then boom, Scott Brown!

There's litle in politics more satisfying than seeing people change the rules to suit their own needs and then have it backfire.

Chris said...

"Oh, the horrific calculations that would be required! Death of a child plus cancer? Death of 2 children plus advanced cancer with chemotherapy?"

The only calculation required is a count of the votes. I'm sure she'd be all accommodating, despite the rules, if Duckworth's vote was necessary for Pelosi to win.

They're not so much rules as guidelines (like the Constitution, apparently). And what would stop her from breaking them?

Fernandinande said...

..now heavily pregnant and following medical advice not to travel, and she wants to vote by proxy.

The fetus has no rights, so pregnancy is irrelevant and Duckworth is voluntarily choosing to not vote.

CStanley said...

I clicked on a story about Jon Stewart's take on this and can't stop laughing at his characterization of Tammy Duckworth as a "Democratic demographic Turduckworth."

PB said...

I'm sure Jon Gruber could come up with a "technical model" to determine who could vote and under what conditions that would always make Democrats happy!

Gahrie said...

I sympathize with Pelosi. After all, if she allows an exemption, she will be forced to use her judgment in the future about exemptions, and we all know she lacks any discernible powers of judgment.

Trashhauler said...

I like the idea of people following rules. I have no idea why the Democrats made such a rule, but it's their right to do so. I do wonder, however, if this rule is written down and if there is some mention of exceptions for cause.

Because if the rule allows for exceptions, it would seem that Ms Pelosi's stance is nothing more than political expediency.

SteveR said...

Nancy Pelosi is a great exemplar of all things liberal Democratic, and the more and longer she persists the better for Republicans. Let her talk more, streak across the House floor, carry the big gavel. Bring it on.

The Drill SGT said...

"On Wednesday, the fatal blow was delivered to Pelosi’s hand-picked choice for Energy and Commerce Committee ranking member. By a vote of 100 to 90, Democrats elected Pallone to serve as ranking member on that committee."

Sam L. said...

Nasty Nancy, not a kind. loving, grandmotherly type.

Henry said...

Is the requirement that members be present to vote a constitutional matter?

From the Office of the Clerk (my emphasis):

The Constitution simply provides that "the yeas and nays of the Members of either House on any question shall at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the Journal."

Hmmm. Then there's this:

The Constitution requires that a quorum, or a simple majority of the Members,
is to be present on the floor when the House of Representatives transacts business.


If Rep. Duckworth is not present to be part of a quorum, how can she cast a vote?

Clyde said...

I hate it when evil Republican men like Nancy Pelosi conduct their war on women.

Wince said...

Headline: "Democrat leader Pelosi wants women bare-prosthesis and pregnant!"

Trashhauler said...

Henry,

Duckworth was not asking to be allowed to vote on a matter of legislation presented on the House floor. She asked for a proxy vote on a matter of internal Party business, which is not done on the floor of the House. So, I don't believe the Constitutional requirements apply.

Lem said...

Althouse Agrees with Pelosi... headline bait.

Pelosi takes full advantage of a rule the republicans seem to wave for her... the strict adherence to the time for speaking on the well of the house.

The clock doesn't apply to her.

That may have changed, but that is what I recall.

Lem said...

EDH is better

I'm Full of Soup said...

A younger leader with some real vision might have taken this as an opportunity to test out remote, online voting so Congress critters could reduce their time spent in the Imperial City and also reduce their travel and carbon footprint at the same time ....since you know afterall the Dems are the climate change zealots right?

Patrick said...

Didn't a Federal judge just take some great for refusing to accommodate a pregnant woman, or nursing mom or something?

I'm sure the left well go just as nuts over Nancy.

richard mcenroe said...

Nancy Pelosi will commandeer an Air Force VC-20 to fly 3,000 miles to pick up a quarter a "donor" drops.

This is the 21st century. How hard can it be to have a local judge or sheriff or freaking notary public come to her and witness her vote?

Thorley Winston said...

The smart move in a case with such exceptional circumstances (pregnant woman unable to travel) is to ask the remaining members if they’d be willing to consent to a one-time exception by unanimous acclimation or if there was any objection put it to a vote (and make sure that your supporters know to vote “yes” on allowing the pregnant disabled veteran to vote by proxy because she can’t travel due to doctor’s orders). This way the leader gets to look humane while still following the rules (any rule can be suspended or changed if the members agree) and the risk of having an additional vote against your preferred candidate is outweighed by the goodwill you gain amongst the rest of your caucus.

richard mcenroe said...

Pelosi is probably liable to a suit under the Americans with Disability Act. Not to mention a First Amendment infringement on Rep. Duckworth's right to vote. I thought that was something Dems cared about.

Henry said...

@Trashhauler. Thanks. I figured it might be something like that.

Maybe the Republicans should announce that in their caucus all party votes can be submitted from anywhere.

alan markus said...

Family friendly mandates, ADA compliance burdens, Global Warming guilt trips - that's all for the Little Peoples.

sparrow said...

How about all the laws Congress exempts itself from? What a strange case of strict application of a mere rule when laws are routinely altered to let Congress off the hook. Makes her look like a control freak, there has to be a mechanism for creating exceptions.

PB said...

Rules, laws, at this point, what difference does it make?

RecChief said...

Bullshit, if there is an area of life on this planet where rules are more elastic than The Democrat Party, go ahead and let me know.

On the other hand, I am really looking forward to Nancy Pelosi, DWS, and Harry Reid continuing in their respective leadership positions. Er....forward?? hahahaha

Dr.D said...

Absolutely right, beginning with Pres Obola. He, more than anyone else ought to be held to the strict letter of the law!! (Ha, ha, ha! I can hardly believe that I wrote that regarding obola who has never seen a law he would not break!)

n.n said...

A dearth of empathy. At minimum, it would be an excessive burden for Duckworth to vote in person. At most, it could unnecessarily endanger the lives, not merely welfare, of mother and child.

Still, how much advance notice did Duckworth receive? Do congressional rules permit early voting and other reasonable accommodations for pregnant amputees?

Political life imitates Saturday Night Live.

n.n said...

Thorley Winston:

Pelosi is still wielding the mallet following passage of Obama-"care". Her mindset is conditioned accordingly.

Anonymous said...

Agree with @Edmund. They are outdated.

I would move forward on the level that any rule in the current era that does not have the elasticity to accommodate this situation within its scope needs to be revisited anyway. I would also look for exceptions that have already been made and for what reasons.

Not big on a narrow read of the "rules are rules" mentality, and yes, I understand why it historically exists. There are many exceptions already; rules become outdated; higher level rules can negate the lower level rules (i.e. Constitution vs. non-disclosure agreements; public's right to know vs. national security overreach); spirit of the law vs. letter of the law; and lastly, it's healthy that people be reminded of their role as codifiers of rules, not just followers of rules.

Either way, it should work out. She either will get to vote, which will punch another hole in a rule that needs to be updated, or she will not get to vote, which will publicly underscore a rule that still needs to be updated.

chillblaine said...

People should be especially nice to pregnant women. Especially Autozone.

She should switch parties.

Kelly said...

If they allowed her to vote by proxy it would show how easy it would be to keep all congress people home to vote that way all the time. That would be bad for lobbyist and all the congressional aides.

Christy said...

The traditional work around is an agreement for someone voting opposite to Duckworth not to vote either. Are there no democrats trusted enough to make that agreement? Or are dems in such non-thinking lockstep no one dares?

Chef Mojo said...

Congress changes its rules all the time. It's what they do.

Dan Hossley said...

Pelosi filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court in favor of women that was denied reasonable accommodation by her employer because she was pregnant.

Jon Stewart had it right. Time for her to go.

RecChief said...

speaking of rules, executive amnesty thursday night.

this is where the US becomes a junta

n.n said...

Pelosi expects Duckworth to be a good soldier and fall on her choice.

Barefoot, pregnant, and in the workplace.

Dan Hossley:

Then again, Pelosi may simply be a hypocrite and possess an ulterior motive.

chillblaine:

I wonder if it was a summary judgment -- in favor of the mother -- by the jurors or if the pregnancy really did not interfere with performance of her duties. The press cites anonymous sources to corroborate her allegations.

James Pawlak said...

Ms. Pilosi's "Botox" has soaked into her brain--Such as it ever was.

Big Mike said...

UPDATE: Pelosi's maneuver backfired, since the individual she had been trying to install as committee chairman was defeated by the entire caucus 100 - 90.

TDP said...

This is one of those very rare occasions where Pelosi is right, but not politically-correct...

Usually it's the other way around - she's politically-correct and wrong as hell.

Hagar said...

We jhave to have rules so that we may know what we are deviating from.
Otherwise, there is anarchy.

alan markus said...

UPDATE: Pelosi's maneuver backfired,

Hooray - a "two-fer" - Pelosi did not get what she wanted and she gave a sticky talking point to use when Dems/Liberals pull the "War on Women" meme.

As discussed yesterday, Democrats will be having their own version of the Tea Party making itself known - wonder if amnesty will speed that up.

Drago said...

Rules are rules?

LOL

Not according to Al Sharpton and his tax attorney.

SGT Ted said...

Rules are rules.

Except when it comes to immigration, or anything a progressive doesn't want to be bothered with.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

This is a caucus vote not a floor vote, so really there are no rules.

twgin said...

This brings up the larger point of the complete and utter hypocrisy of just about anybody who defends a position with the statement "we are a nation of laws" or "its the law of the land". I've got 10 million or more illegal aliens in my state alone, and believe me, their presence is such numbers has ruined, among other things, the quality of life in my little town.

Since childhood an almost fetish of mine has always been "playing by the rules", "being a good citizen", all the pablum served up in what was then the process of raising children. It is depressing how cynical I have become about the whole thing and a problem in what to tell my own children.

There's a whole laundry list of stuff good citizens are supposed to care about. Its all over for this citizen and I'm sure I'm not alone. I'd head for Australia but they actually seem to care about immigration.

Can't wait for our glorious president's latest constitutional excursion tomorrow. Can't wait to see the pretzels people will twist themselves into justifying his actions. I wonder where our hostess will fit in.

Dave Schumann said...

@twgin -- my elderly father is fed up with the country and wants to leave. His primary idea is to go to Singapore.

He has some memory from the 70s of Singapore being open to Americans with a little money.

If you prefer English and aren't a multimillionaire, there really isn't anywhere else to go.

Krumhorn said...

The EEOC does not treat private employers well when reasonable accommodations are not made to deal with the temporary disability of pregnancy.

Of course, Piglosi is all for that...except when it affects her sty.

But hey! When you have noble intentions, everything else is irrelevant.

- Krumhorn

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Need to get some reasonable accommodations up in the people's House!

chickelit said...

TDP said...
This is one of those very rare occasions where Pelosi is right, but not politically-correct...

That's a new wrinkle for her.

kcom said...

"Well, I suspect that Tammie may want to make sure she gets there early next Congress to vote on the new dem Leader..."

Sorry to burst your bubble but that vote has already taken place. Pelosi was re-elected. That's why she's going through these machinations, because she's putting her new team in place. Sad, but true. She's a three-time loser the Democrats should dump - but they don't.

CatherineM said...

If she was the member of any Corporate Board (or shareholder) Duckworth would be able to vote by proxy. If being heavily pregnant on two artificial legs ( I can't imagine) is not a resonaable excuse, what is? Funeral is not. Corporations view funerals for all employees as optional for those who are not an immediate family member. If not, it's a vacation day. In corporations Tammy Duckworth would be accommodated. It is like these people have never worked in the real world.

This of course is about Pelosi's friend.

Mike near Seattle said...

Is there no Democrat gentlemanly (or ladylike) enough to pair votes with Ms. Duckworth and abstain from voting for Ms. Pelosi?

I guess not...

pst314 said...

"Count every vote" and "Let everyone vote" are favorite Democrat slogans.

pst314 said...

Democrats hate pregnant women!

pst314 said...

Democrats hate the disabled!

pst314 said...

Democrats hate...well why go on?

Skeptical Voter said...

Pelosi is simply a pig. I'm not saying that she's the campus slut--that's one kind of pig.

But she's a particular kind of pig--ethically deficient, not too bright, although she knows where to put her snout in the money trough. She lives in moral and ethical slop--and she enjoys it.

Which is why Ms. Duckworth needs to remember the rule on wrestling with pigs: you get dirty and the pig enjoys it.

But ultimately the odor from the pig pen gets too great, and the pig pen is shut down. And the Bamster just threw another heap of steaming stinky trash in the pen with his proposed amnesty.

The pig pen party is in for a long hard time--and it couldn't happen to a more deserving bunch of pigs.

Zach said...

I'm not clear on what the actual objection to voting by proxy is (other than the possibility of voting the wrong way). The House Democrats are a private association that makes its own rules. Duckworth is a member in good standing of that association, and seems to have a valid rationale for asking to vote by proxy.

The mechanics of a proxy vote aren't that difficult, and wouldn't need to inconvenience anyone else.

I agree with Thorley Winston. Pelosi should ask the party to waive the rule by acclamation unless anyone has a valid objection and is willing to put it forward.

Gahrie said...

If you prefer English and aren't a multimillionaire, there really isn't anywhere else to go.

Costa Rica

twgin said...

Prefer english you say ? The school district in my little burg is now about 80 % hispanic; who knows how many are actually citizens. It goes without saying that all of the resources of the state and the nation are not only provided but legally owed to these illegal residents.

This is the outcome of unbridled illegal immigration; of course tomorrow it will apparently all be made legal by Obama's pen.

If I prefer english I'm going to have to move to another state, if I'm looking for the "rule of law" I don't know where to go.

gerry said...

Pallone beats Eshoo even without the proxy vote.

A blow to Pelosi, so to speak.