Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Sensenbrenner the Meek?


The Green Bay Press Gazette carried a story about F. Jim on Monday. In the piece they profile F. Jim and the fact that he will soon end his term as Chairman of the Judiciary Committee. The most shocking comment of the story is the following:


House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Sensenbrenner insists he's gone out of his way to treat Democrats on his committee fairly.



Oh no he didn’t! Well maybe it’s just me, but I seem to remember several unfair acts by F. Jim just last year.

  • He apparently disliked witnesses giving testimony critical of the Patriot Act so he single handedly shut down a hearing, cutting off Dems mikes in mid-sentence. He violated several rules in the Robert’s Rules of Order protocol.

  • When the ranking Dem John Conyers wanted hearings on topics that could expose the Bush Administration, F. Jim refused to hold them. Then when Conyers wanted to have a forum instead, F. Jim and his staff reportedly would not allow Conyers to use a room. One time Conyers even had to hold one in a small basement room.



F. Jim, those things do not sound like you are treating anyone “fairly.” Perhaps you have been in Congress too long, or maybe you are becoming delusional. In any case, I think you have become unfit for office.

3 comments:

grumps said...

There is a disconnect between the truth and what F Jim believes.

publius said...

"He apparently disliked witnesses giving testimony critical of the Patriot Act so he single handedly shut down a hearing, cutting off Dems mikes in mid-sentence. He violated several rules in the Robert’s Rules of Order protocol."

What a revisionist version of that day's events!

What he disliked was the witnesses bogging the Committee down in testimony on Guantanamo Bay. The testimony was non-germane to the hearing (which was held at the behest of the ranking member (Conyers)).

When their testimony turned off-topic, he warned them that he would shut the hearing down if they didn't stay on topic. They were duly warned and decided to make a circus of the event to make a political point.

I would venture to guess that the day turned out exactly the way the witnesses and the Democrats planned and it got little to no traction except for your posting here about it.

It was nothing more than a stunt and The Chairman called them on it.

He had also warned the Democrats on the committee that he would shut it down if the testimony deviated from the actual subject of the hearing (The Patriot Act). They were, in part, responsible for the behavior of the witnesses as they put together the witness list for that particular hearing.

The Patriot Act has little to nothing to do with Guantanamo Bay.

Cory Liebmann said...

i saw this on c-span (before F shut down the mics)so i don't think that this is revisionist at all. he was not in the room and then he barged in, took over, shut down witnesses, and then shut down the mics.

i don't think that the gb talk could be called "non-germane" but for the sake of argument...even if it was, F had no right to single handedly shut down the testimony. a chairman is not an all powerful king.

got no traction besides my post? well, it appeared in the green bay paper, rolling stone, dem and liberal blogs, and air america (now i know that you might not approve of some of these, but it certainly did get some traction).

what about F refusing to give dems a room to have a forum in? are they not reps for citizens even if they are dems? is that not the "peoples house"? then once the dems got a basement "closet" the majority scheduled an unusual amount of votes. seems like the typical right wing attempt to silence disent.