Dead Presidents

Historical facts, thoughts, ramblings and collections on the Presidency and about the Presidents of the United States.

By Anthony Bergen

I’ve been thinking about the last question I got about Speaker John Boehner saying that he isn’t going to negotiate with President Obama anymore and about how generally terrible Congress is and I came to a thought.

The Speaker of the United States House of Representatives is next in line to the Presidency after the Vice President.  The Speaker controls the flow of legislation in the House and is easily the most influential member of the Legislative branch — probably the third or fourth most powerful person in the country.  The Speaker is an enormously important component to the political process in the United Sates.

It requires a simple majority of the votes of 435 people, many of whom are casting ballots on the first day of their new job in Congress, to elect the Speaker of the House.  The voting is almost always done along strict party lines.  John Boehner will probably be Speaker until January 3, 2015.  It only took 200 people to decide that.  Although the Speaker of the House is a tremendously powerful person who influences the lives of every American in many ways, John Boehner is really only accountable to the 8th Congressional District of Ohio.  Nancy Pelosi was really only accountable to the 8th Congressional District of California.

Understanding all of this, shouldn’t we choose the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives in a national election?  Shouldn’t candidates for the Speaker have to face all of the voters of our country?  Shouldn’t all Americans help make that decision?

  1. jheath said: As a brand new federal employee, I can say with confidence, sir, that your ideas are far too logical and level headed for the federal government.
  2. kaiyves said: Interesting point…
  3. scottpelley reblogged this from gedenkenbrauchtwissen and added:
    Eh. I vote no. You’ve got to remember that our founders really, really didn’t trust the general public (Senators only...
  4. within-the-pine reblogged this from deadpresidents
  5. gedenkenbrauchtwissen reblogged this from deadpresidents and added:
    Very interesting question and while I find myself answering “yes,” I’m not sure how that would even work, how such a...
  6. norealbusinessbeinghere said: There must be instances of dissatisfied party members dumping their speaker.
  7. taumw reblogged this from deadpresidents
  8. riotsqurrrl reblogged this from deadpresidents
  9. technicolorrelays reblogged this from deadpresidents
  10. alwaysthetumbling reblogged this from kotaline
  11. turntablefuneral reblogged this from deadpresidents
  12. fly-casually said: Therein lies the beauty of our representative democracy.
  13. dream-crusher said: Just goes to show how much better the Westminster System is.
  14. kotaline reblogged this from deadpresidents