Senate Rules

Richard Swerdlin swerdlin at GTE.NET
Sat Sep 13 11:38:14 MDT 1997

 > From: kewcomm1 at
 > To: swerdlin at GTE.NET; RUSHTALK at
 > Subject: Re: Senate Rules

 > On 09/13/97 09:04:10 you wrote:
          Since Senate rules permit a Chair of Foreign Relations to block
  >consideration of a nominee for ambassadorship, said rule should be
 >changed.  This rule is poor, since it gives too much power to a single
 >member of the committee.  Whether it has been used by Sen. Biden r
 >Sen. Helms, it remains poor.  Let the full Senate vote for or againsta
> >gven nomination.

Richard Swerdlin

> > >> > >==============================
 > Richard,
 > All during the "thousand years" of controlling
 > the Congress, the Dem Liberals never thought
 > the rules were wrong.
 > Now that their "ox is being gored," they're
 > all for changing the rules that served their
 > ends.
 > They don't really give a damn about rules.
 > Having watched them as a majority run committee
 > hearings, they played "cut throat" politics
 > in stopping the minority from having any input
 > that opposed their agenda.
 > To Mr. Weld, there is one defining question --
 > like the one asked by Paula of Bill -- which part
 > of "NO" don't you understand?
 > Ken Wyman

         I am aware of the track record mentioned in your message.

         However, I am also aware of the fact that it is better to end a
 questionable rule or custom, than to perpetuate it.  The idea of "now it's
 payback time", is one which does not promote greater confidence in
 established government.

         In line with the above, something interesting happened in Denton
 County, Texas.  Sheriff Kaisner offered another rival in the Republican
 primary the position of Chief Deputy, if said rival would drop out of
 the contest.  Someone surprisingly spilled the beans.  Actually it was
 an adviser of the sheriff.  In the end, Sheriff Kaisner was convicted of
 bribery.  His attorney had told the judge that such offers were merely a
 customary form of patronage in Texas.  The judge agreed that this was
 not the first instance of same.  Significantly however, the judge said
 the action was *criminal*.  In essence, it was time to reduce this or
 comparable criminal behavior.

         "That's the way it is", was probably Dan Rostenkowski's attitude
 in the House, but he wound up behind the legal 8-ball.  This was another
 Chair who thought he didn't perspire as more ordinary citizens do.

 Richard Swerdlin
 (swerdlin at

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