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Goat Roping Season In Harrisburg
“goat rope (plural goat ropes) (slang) A confusing, disorganized situation often attributed to or marked by human error. quotations ▼ (slang) A convoluted issue that is contested by many parties.”
[See GOP in Harrisburg]
In Harrisburg, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives is not in session. There are elected representatives there who are paid by the people of Pennsylvania to work on their behalf. However, they are not doing that work. The representatives are locked out.
Why? How is this possible? Why are the men and women of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives not doing their jobs?
Bear with me. I will try to explain. You may want to sit down for this one.
Weeks ago, top House Republican Bryan Cutler and fifteen other GOP lawmakers crossed party lines and voted to install a Democratic Speaker of the House, Mark Rozzi. Cutler and company justified this move on the pretext that Rozzi would act as an Independent and be a bipartisan Speaker.
This was never true. Rozzi did not leave the Democratic Party. He did not promise to leave the Democratic Party. He did not ever commit to becoming an Independent.
Rozzi is a Democrat. He has served in the House for ten years. He has voted with the Democratic majority 99.9% of the time.
In order to convene, the House of Representatives must first put in place the rules by which it will conduct business. The Speaker controls this process. Rozzi is preventing the adoption of rules. That means the House cannot convene and cannot do anything until Rozzi says so and permits the adoption of rules.
Republicans in the House are still in the majority. Several special elections for opens seats will be conducted in February. The seats in question are in blue districts. They are expected to go to Democrats. After the special elections therefore it is anticipated that the Democrats will control the House in Harrisburg..
Rozzi intends to keep the House out of session until it is under the control of the Democratic Party. He has, in effect, seized control of the House and shut it down. Strange behavior for an Independent. Exactly what one would expect from a Democratic Party functionary and a guy who takes his orders from Josh Shapiro.
The Republicans in the House, including now Cutler and company who are apparently feeling the heat, are attempting to bypass this parliamentary roadblock by using another technique. This allows a majority of the House to physically appear on the House floor, convene a session themselves and elect a new speaker.
To do this they need every Republican to go along. They have a one-vote majority.
One lone Republican is refusing to cooperate. He is preventing the rest of the party from putting a Republican speaker in place and convening. That representative is Thomas L. Mehaffie III. He is from Dauphin County. He was perhaps best known prior to this episode for pushing to have Hershey’s Kisses become the official state candy.
No word on how many pieces of silver it took to buy Mehaffie.
So, to recap – the Republican leadership of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, for reasons which remain unclear but presumably involve backroom deals, shady promises, and future favors, crossed party lines and gave control over the House to the Democratic Party. That Party has now shut down entirely the democratic process in the state capital and will not allow the people’s representatives to do their jobs until Governor Shapiro, Mark Rozzi, and the Democratic Party machine decide they can.
The entire state government is being held hostage, and it is the Republican Party that made all this possible.
Who knew it was goat roping season in Harrisburg?
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