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house Bill H. Res. 452

Should The House Elect New Speakers by Secret Ballot?

Argument in favor

Representatives should be able to vote their conscience and not face repercussions from their party leaders when electing a Speaker of the House.

DonaldTrump's Opinion
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10/14/2015
"I think Paul Ryan's a very nice person. I think he doesn't want it very badly, but you never know. Maybe he's playing one of the great games of all time. It is Speaker of the House, I mean, it's a great position. But he doesn't seem to want it. But I'll bet you that if it was actually offered to him, he would take it." [cbsnews.com]
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Ari's Opinion
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10/13/2015
The establishment leadership should not have the ability to "punish" those who vote their conscience, especially for something so important as the speakership. An example of this is the demotion of Mark Meadows (R) from his committee chairmanship after he called for Boenher to resign.
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···
10/13/2015
This ballot needs to secret so congressman can really vote their conscience and not be bullied by the more powerful. If the ballot isn't secret, some may be kept from progressing simply because they voted against whoever wins.
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Argument opposed

A roll call vote for Speaker gives both party leaders and constituents an insight into who lawmakers support for a critically important leadership position.

BTSundra's Opinion
···
10/13/2015
Congress should have to answer to all of their actions.
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StratonGarrard's Opinion
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10/13/2015
Elections should not be done in secret no matter what supposed repercussions may occur. If lawmakers are afraid of their superiors due to their views on an election, then maybe they should've considered another career rather than politics.
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Mart's Opinion
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10/13/2015
Third in line to presidency should be public.
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What is House Bill H. Res. 452?

This resolution would require the Clerk of the House to conduct the election of the Speaker of the House of Representatives by secret ballot. 

Currently, votes by the whole House in the election of the Speaker are roll call votes — though initial ballots within the Democratic or Republican party may be secret.

Impact

Members of Congress, and the Clerk of the House.

Cost of House Bill H. Res. 452

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth: The Speaker of the House is elected by a majority of the House of Representatives each Congress, which would be 218 votes currently but could be lower due to vacant seats, absentee lawmakers, or members who vote “present.”

Candidates are nominated through a series of votes within each party, and Republican and Democratic lawmakers may choose their candidate via secret ballot. The process then heads to a vote of the full House where the 218 votes or 50 percent plus one is the threshold. If neither of those is attained on the first vote, additional rounds of voting would take place until a Speaker is elected.

In the 114th Congress’ first election of a Speaker, incumbent Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) was threatened with facing a second ballot, which hadn’t happened since 1923, but he was successful on the first ballot with 12 votes to spare. On September 25, 2015 Speaker Boehner announced that he would resign his Speakership and seat in Congress at the end of October, leading to uncertainty surrounding his replacement.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: 
"C-SPAN 112th Congress Roll Call" by C-SPAN (WP:CSPAN))

AKA

Effective Leadership Elections for Congressional Trust Resolution

Official Title

Amending the Rules of the House of Representatives to require the Clerk of the House to conduct the election of the Speaker of the House by secret ballot.

simple resolution Progress


  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Rules
    IntroducedSeptember 30th, 2015
    "I think Paul Ryan's a very nice person. I think he doesn't want it very badly, but you never know. Maybe he's playing one of the great games of all time. It is Speaker of the House, I mean, it's a great position. But he doesn't seem to want it. But I'll bet you that if it was actually offered to him, he would take it." [cbsnews.com]
    Like (29)
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    Congress should have to answer to all of their actions.
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    “It appears that even a very conservative speaker like John Boehner is unable to control the extreme right-wing drift of Republicans in the House. This is a party whose ideology is way out of touch with the American people. Without Boehner, it may get even worse.” [sanders.senate.gov]
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    Elections should not be done in secret no matter what supposed repercussions may occur. If lawmakers are afraid of their superiors due to their views on an election, then maybe they should've considered another career rather than politics.
    Like (22)
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    Third in line to presidency should be public.
    Like (21)
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    The establishment leadership should not have the ability to "punish" those who vote their conscience, especially for something so important as the speakership. An example of this is the demotion of Mark Meadows (R) from his committee chairmanship after he called for Boenher to resign.
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    HELL NO!!! These elected officials should be accountable for who they elect as leadership. Keeping it secret only progresses agendas.
    Like (11)
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    Conservatives like conspiracies & secrets. This is NOT the American way. Citizens deserve to know who thinks they get paid to govern & who does not. If you can't cast your ballot in the light of day, you need to resign from Congress because your priority has ceased to to the good of the country & it has become all about YOU & MONEY!
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    This is a joke right?
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    No votes should ever be secret. Our Congress should be transparent.
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    There are enough back room dealings going on in Washington, the last thing they should be able to do is select the number three in line for the Presidency in secret, without public knowledge of who voted for whom. They are elected to do a job as public figures and, as such, their votes are not theirs, they are representative (supposedly) of us. They have no right to secrecy on this (or any other) matter (National Intelligence and Security operations exempted).
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    This ballot needs to secret so congressman can really vote their conscience and not be bullied by the more powerful. If the ballot isn't secret, some may be kept from progressing simply because they voted against whoever wins.
    Like (2)
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    May speed up the process. Secret ballots are used for everything else. One could say that a non-secret ballot could be intimidating for some.
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    Leadership votes should be a matter of public record.
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    Transparency
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    The representatives are elected from the people. This is why we have Popular Sovereignty in the first place. We need to be able to see your decisions so we can make ours. Your allegiance is to the people, not your party.
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    We, as American citizens, should be allowed to see who our representatives/senators votes for, since we voted for them to go into their office position.
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    this will stop any fall out for the rino's that do what is the right thing
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    Nay - Vote how you feel. If how you feel isn't how the public feels, then you SHOULD be cast aside. Isn't the that the point of democratic republic?
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    Since when do the constituents not have the right to know how our representative votes on anything? We The People have the right to know how our lackey votes on EVERYTHING - more transparency not less!
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