In a late-night, secret meeting, House Republicans voted to gut the independent Office of Congressional Ethics: "Behind closed doors, the caucus voted to approve an amendment to a broader House rules package that would put the office under the House Ethics Committee and significantly restrict its authority. The House will vote Tuesday on the rules package as members open the 115th Congress."There is much more at the link, including the alarming and infuriating details of the new arrangement.
It is a breathtaking signal that the incoming Republican-led Congress will not concern itself with ethics — except insofar as finding ways to diminish accountability for its own ethics breaches.
...There is no way to view this maneuver as anything but an attempt to shield corrupt Republican members of Congress.
In a statement, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi said: "Republicans claim they want to 'drain the swamp,' but the night before the new Congress gets sworn in, the House GOP has eliminated the only independent ethics oversight of their actions. Evidently, ethics are the first casualty of the new Republican Congress."
...Trump and his cronies have been treating the swamp like their own personal spa, and now House Republicans have decided to wade right in, too.
Far from holding Trump accountable on any of his many axes of emergent corruption, Congressional Republicans are basking in the glow of the tacit permission his smoldering hostility for established rules and norms has given them.
We are about to enter what is shaping up to be the most unchecked and imbalanced governance in the nation's history.
Posted by Melissa McEwan at Tuesday, January 03, 2017
I've got a new post at Shareblue about House Republicans voting to gut the independent ethics office in a secret meeting last night: