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Procedural Sniping Continues to Roil House

Explosive partisan sniping continued on the House floor Thursday morning as Republicans accused the chair of holding open for too long a vote on an amendment to a Democratic housing measure.

Once again, Rep. Mike McNulty (D-N.Y.) was in the chair when Republicans balked at his handling of a vote to sustain the ruling of the chair.

McNulty was also chairing House proceedings in July when there was an malfunction of electronic voting screens and McNulty allegedly announced an incorrect vote total as Republicans were not given time to change their ballots.

The Republican minority has been engaged in a tactical revolt on the House floor following Democrats’ decision to dispatch the war supplemental spending bill directly to the floor instead of going through the regular committee process.

That decision prohibits Republicans from offering their usual procedural protests such as a motion to recommit.

So Republicans have engaged in other procedural mischief, such as repeatedly changing their votes on such routine things as a motion to adjourn the chamber.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) decried the tactic on the floor Wednesday night, which delayed consideration of the housing bills and the war supplemental.

Hoyer called the GOP maneuvering “filibuster by vote changing.”

“You can have your motions. But what just happened, in my opinion, is an abuse of the chair’s forbearance,” Hoyer said.

“I just hope that the Majority Leader and the members of the majority understand … the grievances that we have,” retorted House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio). “As a result, all we’re asking for is to be treated fairly.”

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