Last week the Dems in the House did something special….they had an old fashion sit-in. They took it upon themselves to protest the old fashion way….some techniques never grow old.
Democrats are calling their sit-in protest on the House floor a success, even though it hasn’t led to the votes on gun-control legislation they demanded. About two dozen lawmakers were still taking part Thursday morning, even after House Speaker Paul Ryan adjourned the chamber about 3am until after the July 4 holiday. It was unclear how long they’d stay, but the Hill says it has the potential to be a “days-long demonstration.” If nothing else, Democrats say the protest is raising awareness of the issue around the world, the AP reports. “We crossed one bridge,” says protest leader and civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis of Georgia. “We have other bridges to cross.” In other coverage:
- Ryan made a move to end the standoff with what the New York Times calls the “remarkable step” of calling a vote on an appropriations bill around 3am without any debate. The bill, which includes $1.1 billion to fight Zika, passed 239 to 171.
- Rep. Katherine Clark of Massachusetts came up with the idea for the sit-in and recruited Lewis to lead it, reports the Washington Post. Lewis “gave us all the resolve and the grit and determination to see this through when we are back in July,” Clark says.
- Republicans shut off House cameras after the sit-in began just before noon Wednesday, the Hill reports, but C-SPAN used Periscope and Facebook Live to keep broadcasting the protest. The protesting Democrats ignored GOP leaders’ reminders that lawmakers are banned from using electronic devices to broadcast House proceedings.
- Ryan told CNN Wednesday night that the protest was a “publicity stunt” that would do nothing to make America safer. “This is not about a solution to a problem. This is about trying to get attention.”
- Politico looks at how Democrats angered by the lack of action after the Orlando mass shooting planned and carried out the dramatic protest. “We said at the beginning of this week that we would use every tool in our toolbox,” says Rep. Steve Israel. “We said some of those tools involved hammers. Some of those tools involved screwdrivers. Some are blunt, some not. We’re going to keep using every single tool.”
This was all the rage for a couple of days and it ruled the news cycle……and then with this “success” under their belt the Dems ended the protest on Thursday of last week……
Democrats ended their gun-control sit-in at the House of Representatives on Thursday after more than 25 hours on the floor, the AP reports. According to Reuters, Democratic lawmakers, who had stayed overnight while chanting and singing, were trying to force a vote on legislation to expand background checks and stop people on terror watch lists from buying guns. They left hours after Republicans shut the House down for the Fourth of July holiday (a move that resulted in chants of “shame”). By the time the sit-in ended, not as many Democrats remained on the House floor as had started the protest, and the energy from Wednesday was missing, Politico reports.
Democrats rallied with supporters outside the House after ending the sit-in and declared victory despite failing to get Republicans to hold a vote on gun-control legislation. “Just because they cut and run in the dark of night, just because they have left doesn’t mean we are taking no for an answer,” the AP quotes Rep. Nancy Pelosi as saying. Rep. Steny Hoyer says the Democratic lawmakers will use the holiday to increase support for gun-control legislation in their districts. “We are going to win this struggle,” the AP quotes Rep. John Lewis as saying. Meanwhile, the Senate will vote Thursday on two competing pieces of gun-control legislation introduced by Republicans, Politico reports. Both focus on stopping people on terror watch lists from buying guns, and both votes are motions to table the opposing legislation.
They were getting the message across pretty well….then why end it after 25 hours? Would it have been more dramatic to keep it up for awhile longer?
They ended it because their theatrics was about to be overshadowed by the “Brexit” vote…they figured they could not compete with the news of that vote.
But more because it was going to cut into their weekend…..you see Congress ends on a Thursday for travel home and reconvenes on Tuesday allowing Monday for travel also….
I sorry but I feel I need to agree with Ryan…this was only a stunt…..none of them wanted to continue into the weekend and cut into their time off…..amusing considering that they are a part-time body anyway……again…what did they accomplish?
I would have been more impressed if they had continued….now they just look silly to me.
I mean if wave after wave of gun violence involving deaths cannot bring a sane discussion what part of a sit-in would do it?