Obviously the big news of the week is that the House made the impeachment of Donald Trump official, setting up the rules for further proceedings. It was a party line vote, 232 to 196, with only two Democrats (Collin Peterson of Minnesota and Jeff Dan Drew of New Jersey) voting against. Steil and every other Republican voted against the investigation. (RC 603 and 604, H Res 660, October 31). Rep. Steil always answered at his party's call this week, going 21 for 21 on party-line votes.
This Wednesday, while the rest of Congressional Republicans were busy voting when they weren’t obstructing justice, Rep. Steil had a photo opportunity with Vice President Mike Pence. As a result, Steil missed votes on a bill to protect the 2020 elections against interference by foreign governments.
Congress is back in session after a two week break, so time once again to look at our Representative in Washington has been up to. A fairly slow week, with only nine votes.
A major bodyslam for Donald Trump this week regarding the whistleblower complaint of August 12. In a unanimous vote of 421 to zero, the House demanded that Acting Director of National Intelligence Maguire immediately stop stonewalling and send the complaint to the House and Senate Intelligence Committees. They also demanded that Maguire protect the whistleblower from any retaliation by the Trump administration (House Resolution 576, RC 548, Sep 25). This follows a similar vote by the Senate on Tuesday. Trump has literally not got a soul in Congress willing to defend him on the whistleblower issue.
Written throughout the Constitution of the United States are checks and balances on power between the three branches of government. In theory, this balance of power ensures that the country will remain stable and resist the threat of losing the freedom and democracy that many Americans cherish. The power of impeachment is one such check.
Fairly slow week for Congress this second week back. There were only ten votes this week.
Bryan Watch - Sept 2019: Week 1
The 116th Congress is run by 67 Democrats and 44 Republicans, to which I say, good. For once, Congress has some diversity. Yes, there is the occasional black representative, but see, my own people, Hispanics, have historically been underrepresented. The New York Times is a publication I got my free subscription to because my dabbling in real journalism is going nowhere without access to information like the type found in The New York Times. Okay, we have 101 fresh Representatives in the House, mostly white, although there are some people of color.
The question of whether Congress is representative is one that most Americans don’t think twice about. After all, Congress filled with its Congressmen and Senators was designed to be representative of the people in their districts and states. The fact of the matter is that there are other motivations behind the actions Congress takes. While they might want to represent the people, they also represent their own interests, as well as the interests of their sponsors. In addition, Congress as a whole does not accurately represent the demographics of the people. So while members of Congress may take actions to ensure that they are reelected, I do not believe that they represent the people to the best of their ability or accurately.
It was a relatively slow week in Congress. And it will be even slower in coming weeks, as Congress is on vacation until September.
The House makes up half of Congress as the government’s legislative branch. The House has 325 voting members, their positions are based on the population of the 50 states. A representative is referred to as a congressman or congresswoman. The number of voters for the House was set at 435 on August 8, 1911, in effect since 1913. The number of representatives per state is proportionate to the population. Article one, Section two of the Constitution has provided for the minimum and maximum sizes for the House of Representatives, as there are five delegates representing the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
Congress is the legislative body of the United States government. Our lawmakers make decisions that affect us on a federal level, and federal generally refers to the entire country. Individual state law is different from multi-national law that affects the entire country. Each state in the Union is represented by two law makers from the state. There are two chambers that make up Congress, the House of Representatives, and the Senate. Congress has 535 voting members, and 100 Senators. There are six non-voting members representing Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, The Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia.