House members are tired of casting their votes in proxy and staying home in their respective districts. Republicans are set to take control next week and have stated that they will eliminate the Nancy Pelosi rule from COVID, which allowed members to have another person vote for them.
Kevin McCarthy, the presumed Speaker of the House, is part of a small group of people who have never voted by proxy. He tweeted his intentions last Wednesday after the Omnibus monstrosity passed without a quorum being present on the House floor.
For the first time in history, a bill in the House was passed without a physical quorum present—more people voted by proxy than in person.
The omnibus will damage our country, & the blatant disregard for Article I, Section 5 of our Constitution will forever stain this Congress.
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) December 23, 2022
The omnibus vote was conducted with less than half the lawmakers present. 134 Democrats and 92% of Republicans opted to vote by proxy. For nearly three years, House members have had the luxury of calling it in from home, while Pelosi passed the proxy measure in March 2020. This was due to COVID-19 health concerns. The proxy vote option was recently extended to the end of the 117th Congress.
Some lawmakers will be annoyed at the decision of Republicans to allow the House to join the rest of America in returning to work. They have had the luxury of not being there to do their jobs. Rep. Don Beyer (D.VA), whose northern Virginia congressional District is a stone’s throw away from DC, seems to have been kept busy by his Democrat counterparts. He boasted earlier this year that he had cast proxy ballots 2,252 times, and voted to impeach Donald Trump six more times. Insider heard Beyer say, “It’s been a privilege.” “I think I could claim that I voted more than any other member in the House over the past eight years.”
He said, “I enjoy being able to brag about my grandchildren, that I got to vote to impeach Donald Trump six times.”
Christmas dinner at the Beyer home sounds like a lot of fun, with Granddaddy telling the children stories about proxy voting gone rogue. This is where Beyer’s embrace of proxy voting by his Democrat colleagues begins to unravel.
“We have many plus-seventies at Congress. There are many young people in Congress, some with children and families. I believe it was very valuable for them to be able to stay for the parent-teacher conference.”
The elderly. There have been some very good older legislators who managed to continue performing well into their seventies. These people are mostly political has-beens who have outlived their time and should head to Shady Oaks retirement home. They are too old to vote in DC if they don’t want to.
Democrats will likely find little sympathy for legislators with young families who claim that they must stay at home to care for their children. This is, however, one of the noblest callings. You should definitely consider this vocation. You knew exactly what you were signing up for when you ran for office. So, juggle all your obligations and get out there for your votes.
Eric Swalwell is one of the worst proxy voters, having voted 55 times by proxy. What is he doing with all that time?
It is very reasonable to use proxy voting when a lawmaker is seriously ill. In these cases, accommodations should be made. The Eric Swalwell’s are clearly taking advantage of this situation and refusing to turn up to their jobs, which is a serious offense for everyone else.
The House of Representatives is now controlled by the Republicans.