Thank you for this summary! I laughed out loud at the image of McCarthy's speech, "listening to a cover band playing yesterday’s hits."

Jeffries's alliterative alphabetical list of contrasts was clear and clever (and, no doubt, SO irritating to the other party) - he really seemed to enjoy what he was doing, too.

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McCarthy now has powerless power and has slid into leaderless leadership. The outcome of the mid-terms was promising. Maybe, just maybe McCarthy's creation of an empty speakership while the circus runs rings around him will be enough to convince just a few more voters to support Democrats -- for all of the reasons alliterated alphabetically by the Honorable Hakim Jeffries.

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Jan 8·edited Jan 8

Thank you, professor, for capturing so eloquently a moment in history that likely will echo with critical importance for many years to come.

Listening to Hakeem Jeffries speaking live brought on a bout of deep pride as I tried to fight back tears. Here was a real leader in a time of great distress. Here was a leader speaking, without rancor, the truth. And then came a leader in name only, someone who has sold his soul for power while putting at risk the nation and its people, which he is sworn to serve.

Has there ever been such a striking contrast between the light of good and darkness of bad revealed in back-to-back speeches in the the House chamber? It was as if we were watching the dramatic opening scene of an epic narrative about to play out. Now we have to do whatever required to make sure the ending is right and just.

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“Matt Gaetz (R-FL) told reporters. Gaetz later explained away his willingness to accept McCarthy after vowing never to support McCarthy by saying “I ran out of things I could even imagine to ask for.”

Says it all, doesn’t it?!!

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Jan 8·edited Jan 8

Well, here we are. What's the opposite of gloating? Like, when you were right but you didn't want to be, so you don't get the joy of proving people wrong? What is the word for that?

To those of y'all here in this grand ole comments section who, over the last days and weeks were busy dreaming of a fantastical present where a mystical magical moderate Republican would rise up to collaborate with Democrats - going so far as to name actual individual candidates - how are y'all doing tonight?

To those of y'all who clung to any scrap of moonbeam that the insurrection-apologist-now-Speaker with the spine of spaghetti would find some tiny grain of his soul he wouldn't be willing to hawk to the lowest bidder, leading him to decide NOT to give leverage over the global financial system to a fringe cabal of conspiracy theorists, con artists, and sex offenders, when every past bit of behavior clearly indicated he would have made a blood sacrifice of a dozen puppies on the House floor without blinking if that's what it took to get that gavel... how ARE y'all doing tonight?

I guess what I am really trying to ask in my own very salty way is: what IS this quixotic obsession so many of my fellow liberals have with finding that One Good Republican (TM), and why in Yaweh's name does it keep perpetuating itself despite all we have seen and heard and been through? Who are these not-extremists you keep gazing into your rose-tinted microscope expecting to find in this petri dish? Why do you persist in thinking they are still there, or there is any chance they will collaborate in good faith in anything important? There are precisely TWO House Republicans left who thought that inciting an insurrection was worth an impeachment vote, and precisely ZERO who are willing to vote for a woman to control her own uterus (like in every other developed country), a perfect match to the ZERO who are willing to keep assault rifles as far away from our children's bodies as possible (like in every other developed country). ZERO to disallow unlimited millions to buy unlimited ads yelling unlimited lies in districts drawn to favor one side forever. ZERO to do the minimum needed to avoid global climate catastrophe in their own lifetimes.

How many people can hold these positions and not be extreme? ZERO! The praise that gets lavished on JohnKasichJohnMcCainJohnRobertsLisaMurkowskiLynnCheney every time they deign to do the bare minimum on one thing is continually baffling to me. None of these people are moderate! Moderate means in the middle. The median. The median American believes in few to none of the things these folks very publicly stand for. Some of them are very good at selling themselves as moderate, but that does not make them so. Politicians - even those I admire, of which there are plenty - are salespeople for a set of stances. Why are y'all still expecting the product to jive with what it says on the label?

I *think* I know why. It is because we all have Republicans in our friends and family, and we do not wish to think ill of these loved ones. We want very badly to go back to when we all got along and could talk things out. So we are inventing a group of moderate, reasonable Republicans: the kind sweet Aunt Janet regrettably votes for, the kind we disagree with on policy but can talk it out with. The kind sweet Aunt Janet would be if she were in Congress.

Those people do not exist right now.

The current Republican party, and almost all of its denizens, is a giant void. They literally have no platform. They don't want to talk policy. They don't want to talk results. These people stand for late-capitalist big business, dangerously wacky religious groups, or some only-in-America combination of both. The less power the government has, the more power these other societal elements can have. So they have convinced tens of millions of people over several decades to distrust the government, and those people have now put them inside the government to essentially destroy it from within. Why would they talk policy? Why would they talk common sense at all? Those things would lead to solutions, which would mean the government works. This is exactly the opposite of what they are there for. They are all there to take a seat away from the opposition party that DOES engage in policy, nothing more or less. They give new meaning to standing for nothing, in that their absence of ideas and principles is quite purposeful.

My plea: stop looking for the One Good Republican among the current group. Leave these people for dead, or they will drag you off the edge of the Earth. None of them are your sweet Aunt Janet. None of them will save us from the insanity they created and/or tacitly support.

Every bit of thought and energy you have needs to instead go to supporting the MANY good Democrats over these next two years, so this lost battle is merely a blip on the way to winning the war for our democracy. Only then we may get the ultimate prize: some good Republicans.

Until then, spare me. Please.

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What a juxtaposition of messages!

One, a groveling homage to a fading star, the other a inspirational, exciting vision of a brighter future by a rising one.

Hakeem 2024!

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Tonight I was listening to German news on ZDF where the top of the news was Kevin McCarthy's finally getting the speakership after 15 tries, the most tries since the Civil War. The anchor, Anne Gellinek, told us a clear victory this is not. She said it reminds us that straightforward blackmail can exercise influence in this government and the job is clear, this House Leader is one on call. The fact that MTG made no bones about the fact that she was under Trump's influence with a photo showing DT on her phone, meant Kevin McCarthy had to close ranks with the right wing extremists. Ms. Gellinik interviewed an analyst from the publication Foreign Affairs who pointed out that this shows that it only takes a handful of people to really create problems for McCarthy. Ms. Gellinik went on to say that it is as if McCarthy's speech to the House seemed to demonstrate him not grasping that this is not a clear victory. My feeling is that even if he made concessions he does not have to follow them. After all, his is the party of liars and grifters. Ms. Gellinik pointed out that given the circumstances, this House seems threatening to many people. I am one of them. Ms. Gellinik then interviewed Constanze Stelzenmüller, a German foreign policy expert at the Brookings Institute. She said we have to wait and see whether McCarthy has power or whether the far right will rule the House. She reminds us that he has important supporters among the less extreme Republicans, particularly Mitch McConnell, Minority leader in the Senate. Ms. Gellinik referred to the "vote crime show" to ask what was the motive for this right wing group in holding out on McCarthy. Stelzenmüller said it remains to be seen, but that they have somewhat the influence that the Bolsheviks had on the entire Russian population. When asked what this means for Biden, she pointed out that as far as foreign policy is concerned a huge bill has just been passed which gives 47 billion to Ukraine and weapons are being delivered. That is not really something that the House can have much effect on and the Senate has a lot of effect on foreign policy too. She says the House Republicans can cause a lot of trouble domestically, but that we will have to see how far it goes. While she is not optimistic she is counting on the USA to stick to the foreign policy path that it has been on with Biden. She points out the DT on MTG cell phone as meaning that Donald Trump has had an inordinate influence on these proceedings and that McCarthy is beholden to Trump for getting the speakership, and that this fringe group is all beholden to Trump. She says that this is a lesson for Europe too on what can happen if you let right wing extremists take hold of the political rules and discourse. It makes me aware of how much the world is depending on us to be consistent in our foreign policy as well as our domestic policies. Since this vote has been in discussion I have not heard a word about DeSantis, so this was a great opportunity for Trump to put himself front and center again and show what a Kingmaker he is. However, it should serve as a reminder to everyone in this country who wants the country to be well run, and wants the rule of law and order and democracy, that Trump is nothing but bad news for the USA and if he is bad for the USA he is bad for the World.

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Maybe they will dump McTaliban after he ruffles their fascist feathers. Then more paralyses for all to see. Let’s hope it defeats the repugnants soundly in 2024. WE THE PEOPLE have OUR work cut out for us. Forget about McTaliban and his goons....let’s organize the beJesus out of America to VOTE BLUE. Just my two cents on this beautiful Sunday morning in India....

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McCarthy boot licking Trump was disgusting on the Jan 6 anniversary in the very room where many of those Representatives feared for their lives two years ago.

What is truly frightening is Matt Gaetz saying “I ran out of things I could even imagine to ask for.” It is clear McCarthy is so craven that he will give in to ANYTHING demanded by the Insurrection Caucus to hold the gavel. He is a puppet.

The question now is whether ANY of the House Republicans will ever break ranks on necessary legislation.

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shaed in FB with this comment:

“HCR documents the handing over of power in the House, a study of contrssts as well as an impressive inspiring speech by Hakeem Jeffries”

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It's not often that so many memory-challenged people are in the same place at the same time, all forgetting an event they were involved in only two years before.

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Wonderful recap of the final days of crazies for the election of Speaker of the House, the contrast between the Democrats dedicated to Democracy and the highly disorganized Repubs who gave away any responsibility to govern with deals for votes for Kevin McCarthy. In days not hours. The most meaningful and important speech of the week was Minority Leader Jeffries, which could have been an inaugural speech. This: “...freedom over fascism, governing over gaslighting, hopefulness over hatred, inclusion over isolation, justice over judicial overreach, knowledge over kangaroo courts, liberty over limitation, maturity over Mar-a-Lago, normalcy over negativity, opportunity over obstruction, people over politics, quality of life issues over QAnon...” Yes, I am a Democrat and I believe in Truth and Justice. Now take a deep breath. Reality begins.

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Thank you. A beautiful speech. So good to hear an eloquent and consequential speaker.

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McCarthy: “We let everyone in the boat” vs. Jeffries: “We’re all in the same boat.” What a difference!

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'For the first time in nearly a century, we have witnessed the stunning spectacle of a Republican Party so fractured, it has struggled in multiple rounds of balloting to choose a speaker of the House. This Washington drama reflects larger structural forces that are changing American democracy.'

'Revolutions in communications and technology have transformed our democracy in more profound ways than just the more familiar issues of misinformation, hate speech and the like. They have enabled individual members of Congress to function, even thrive, as free agents. They have flattened institutional authority, including that of the political parties and their leaders. They have allowed individuals and groups to more easily mobilize and sustain opposition to government action and help fuel intense factional conflicts within the parties that leadership has greater difficulty controlling than in the past.'

'The internet has also generated an explosion of small-donor donations, which enables politicians to raise large amounts of money without depending on party funds or large donors.'

'The power to gain a national audience and raise more than enough funds through small donations has also encouraged the rise of politicians who are in the game more for the attention and opportunities it provides than for governing. The risk of cable television hosts turning on them is a much greater concern than failing to get desired committee assignments.'

'This particular battle is one sign of the new world of political fragmentation now confronting nearly all democracies. Political fragmentation is the dispersion of political power into so many different hands and centers of power that governing effectively becomes far more difficult.'

'Economic and cultural conflicts drive this fragmentation, but it has been enabled by the communications revolution. In the proportional-representation systems of Western Europe, the traditionally dominant large political parties have splintered into a kaleidoscope of smaller parties. In the United States, the two major parties have been internally split, with leadership having less capacity to overcome those divisions.'

'It took the near-death experience of 2021 gubernatorial elections in Virginia and New Jersey for progressives to give up their demands and permit the infrastructure bill to pass on its own, eventually followed by an Inflation Reduction Act that had been significantly reduced in scope. ' (NYTimes,Mr. Pildes, a legal scholar who analyzes the intersection of politics and law and how they affect our democracy.)

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Gaetz’s acknowledgement that he finally voted for McCarthy when he “ran out of things [he] could even imagine to ask for” is a bellwether of the extremism he is willing to accommodate at the helm of this new Congress. McCarthy’s eagerness to be influenced by the devil himself (tfg) presages that the new “leader” is vying to guide the U.S. to new, hellish lows. Brace yourselves: the next two years will be a ride through Dante’s Inferno!

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