Crap Shoot

From the Los Angeles Times:

They want to repeal the healthcare overhaul, pare back financial regulations, slash federal spending and curtail the reach of the Environmental Protection Agency. In essence, they want to challenge the agenda of the Obama administration at every turn.

The new GOP chairmen of key House committees such as Appropriations, Budget, Energy and Commerce, and Oversight and Government Reform believe they have a mandate to check the size and scope of government.

Original DVD cover

The new speaker, Rep. John A. Boehner of Ohio, has pledged to return the House to “regular order,” which in his mind means granting the committees and their chairmen more power to craft legislation. By contrast, under outgoing Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democratic leadership regularly wrote bills that were then presented to the caucus for an up-and-down vote as a finished product.

If Boehner is true to his word, then bills may move more slowly through the House, with greater input from the rank-and-file.

Obama’s chief antagonist may be Rep. Darrell Issa (R- Vista), who will chair the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Issa has promised not to use the position to mount grandstanding investigations into political arcana, such as subpoenaing the president’s birth certificate, but will instead use his committee to try to uncover fraud and waste within the federal government.

But Issa made it clear that Obama’s legislative accomplishments are a ripe target.

“After a trillion-dollar stimulus that didn’t create jobs, a trillion-dollar bailout of Wall Street and a trillion-dollar healthcare overhaul, the American people believe we need more oversight, not less,” he said in an interview.


Here is a look at some of the incoming House chairmen and where their legislative outlook may bring them into conflict with the president:


Chairman: Harold Rogers of Kentucky


Coming flashpoints: Once an earnest defender of earmarks and derided as “the Prince of Pork” by Democrats, Rogers has vowed to change his ways and abide by a GOP-imposed ban on the practice. Rogers will be a point man on federal spending and is charged with cutting $100 billion from Obama’s budget for the current fiscal year. He may also work to choke off funding for the healthcare overhaul and other newly passed federal initiatives.


Chairman: Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin


Coming flashpoints: Ryan is a true budget hawk, drawing up a blueprint last year for entitlement reform that involved partially privatizing Social Security and doing away with Medicare in its current form.


Education and Labor

Chairman: John Kline of Minnesota


Coming flashpoints: Kline will oversee reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act β€” a crown jewel of the George W. Bush administration β€” and may propose some radical changes, which may put Democrats in the position of defending the work of a Republican president. Kline favors rolling back federal mandates for testing students and eliminating any national standards for accountability, preferring instead to allow local districts to have more control over curriculum.

Energy and Commerce

Chairman: Fred Upton of Michigan


Coming flashpoints: As chairman of a committee with one of the most sweeping jurisdictions in the House, Upton will be working to stymie two Obama administration priorities: healthcare reform and climate change. He has vowed to pass a repeal of the healthcare law and has called the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate carbon emissions a “power grab.” He also opposes the so-called net neutrality rules recently adopted by the Federal Communications Commission, which enable the FCC to intervene if Internet service providers are accused of unfair practices.

Financial Services

Chairman: Spencer Bachus of Alabama


Coming flashpoints: Bachus has pledged to carve away at the massive financial regulatory overhaul bill passed in 2010 and recently was criticized for telling an Alabama newspaper that banking regulators “are here to serve the banks.”


Foreign Affairs

Chairwoman: Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida


Coming flashpoints: Ros-Lehtinen is a staunch supporter of Israel and opposes aid to the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. She takes a hard opposing line on efforts to end the embargo against Cuba.

Homeland Security

Chairman: Peter T. King of New York

Coming flashpoints: King wants to push for a crackdown on illegal immigration from Mexico, saying the Obama administration hasn’t done enough to improve border security, and seeks tougher sanctions for employers who hire illegal immigrants. He has vowed to hold hearings on the “radicalization” of Muslims in the United States […]



Chairman: Lamar Smith of Texas


Coming flashpoints: Like King, Smith wants to be aggressive in stopping illegal immigration. Defying conventional political wisdom, he has argued that Latino voters favor such a stance. Smith opposes closing the prison for accused terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and is expected to regularly call Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. to the Hill to grill him over national security issues.

Oversight and Government Reform

Chairman: Darrell Issa of California


Coming flashpoints: […] Issa […] has said that he wants to pursue […] bureaucratic targets, such as the implementation of the healthcare overhaul, the powers of the Federal Reserve, and the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Issa once called Obama “one of the most corrupt presidents in modern times.”

Ways and Means

Chairman: Dave Camp of Michigan


Coming flashpoints: As chairman of the panel that writes tax policy, Camp also will be on the forefront of repealing the healthcare overhaul. But his real passion lies in overhauling and simplifying the tax code. There, he could possibly find a partner in President Obama, who has made reforming the code a near-term priority.


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22 responses to “Crap Shoot

  1. With a title like “crap shoot,” I knew Issa’s mouth had to be involved. πŸ˜‰

  2. jean-philippe

    The irony of using the Rat Pack for that rat pack is delightful. Also funny that the movie is about a bunch of crooks and thieves. Superb.

    • and getting anything done in congress now is just a roll of the dice.

      • jean-philippe

        They’ll look like a big intestinal obstruction for the next two years (not the best metaphor because it implies the congress is meant to produce (…) ). You can’t win an election when people picture you as this…

        • more like irritable bowel syndrome. they block things for weeks, and suddenly there’s poop spewing all over the place. plus, they give us all stomachaches.

  3. Issa actually pouted after Ahhhhhnold became the Governor of California, and said something like, “But I paid for Gray Davis’ recall.”

    Really, he did (say it, and did pay for it).

    Trust me, he’s a snake of the lowest order. If he tells you that he will do A you can be sure that he will do B.



    • i remember when issa tried to buy the governorship. he’s a snake in the grass on a massive ego-trip. if i ever shook hands with him (that would have to be by force), i’d count my fingers afterward.

  4. Should we really expect much from this bozo squad? When they controlled all the branches of government they promised us show trials and executions. We got neither. And no matter how each one firmly grasps their mandate from god, they just come off like punkass junior high bullies. What they really need to do is just get on with an old fashion purge the way commies famously used to do. We could listen to the moderates confess their crimes, standing in the dock with shaved heads wearing prison garb. The mass executions would really create a terrific rise in Reaganthought and send the message to the proles: you’re next!

    • i remember one show trial (during a lame duck session, by the way) when they impeached the president. so i do expect a lot from this crowd–a lot of faux outrage and hypocrisy. what’ll be fun is that the teabaggers will want to impeach bronzo the clown and yertle mcconnell if they don’t take orders from jim demented and allen west.

  5. afrankangle

    A definite “Holy crap” after hearing Rep Issa’s latest comments. On the other hand, I’m curious to see how Bronzo manages all the disruptions in his tent. But hey … the movie rat pack were more productive!

    • i wasn’t surprised at all at what issa said. he’ll do and say anything in order to get attention. he has to make a lot of noise, or the teabaggers might point out that he’s an arab, and we know that arabs can’t be real americans.

  6. Don’t you just love how all of these right wing shitheads are coming to deficit Jesus now that their guy is done ripping the economy to shreds and they have stolen everything they could while regulators were serving them to borrow a phrase. Why don’t people know these pricks decided to get responsible when it was time to bail out the unemployed and the sick and dying first responders of 9-11 ? If the DNC isn’t all ready working on campaign videos with this information I have to wonder what the hell the are doing. Thanks for the profiles in sewerage.

  7. Issa is such a douchebag.

    • douchebags leave things smelling better once they’ve done their work. issa leaves a stench behind.

      • According to HuffPo comments yesterday, the douchbag had a criminal record: Age 27-felony car theft, age 29-main suspect in torching his own business after quadrupling the insurance two weeks earlier and removing the file three days earlier. Several weapons incidents including bringing a handgun in a box to show an employee he was firing. This guys a real live wire.

        • but according to the henry hyde rule, anything you do up until the age of 41 or 42 is just a youthful indiscretion. oh, the rule only applies to rethuglicans.

  8. 4K

    For what it’s worth: Shouldn’t the “movie title” be Notions 11 or something like that instead of just 11