Wednesday, November 19, 2008

House Republicans elect new leadership team. Stalwarts Pence and Sessions highlight a more conservative group

Ohio Congressman John Boehner remains the Republican leader, but the makeup of the rest of the team suggests an ideological shift to the right. New Conference Chairman Indiana Congressman Mike Pence has been an outspoken voice for fiscal responsibility and smaller government--sometimes putting him at odds with his own party.

Boehner showed some fight during debate on the bailout package. He stood strong with other House Republicans as the only real opposition to the original bailout legislation. This group was successful in stripping obscure language from the bill that would have handed 20% of any profits gained from the acquisition of "high risk" assets to ACORN. They also held their ground in removing an amendment Senator Harry Reid tried to sneak through that would have extended the ban on shale oil exploration.

I'm hopeful this leadership team will keep it up and actually provide opposition when appropriate.

Here's how the new team breaks down:

Republican Leader: Rep. John Boehner (R-OH)
Republican Whip: Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA)
Conference Chairman: Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN)
Policy Committee Chairman: Rep. Thaddeus McCotter (R-MI)
Conference Vice-Chair: Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA)
Conference Secretary: Rep. John Carter (R-TX)
NRCC Chairman: Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX)

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