The Repugs, in their fourth day of kicking their heels and whining over not being able to drill domestically, played their trump card and brought in everyone's favorite lizard:
House Republicans brought Gingrich to the Capitol on Wednesday, partly to revive media coverage of their speech-making protest in the chamber, now in its fourth day.
The rest of Congress is gone for August recess, but several Republican House members have been speaking on the floor of the closed-down chamber, calling for a special session to vote on drilling and energy.
Gingrich did attract more camera crews, and he used the opportunity to point to what may be the GOP's next strategy: If Democrats refuse to hold a separate vote on oil drilling, Republicans could try to block the votes needed to keep government running past September 30.
Oh, classy, guys. Holding the Federal government hostage until the Dems kowtow to your temper tantrum. Thank god the adults are back in charge.
For a little context, let's recall a couple years back and this admirable act of maturity from the responsible Republicans:
After repeated criticism of the Bush administration, the Republican chairman of the House Judiciary Committee yesterday gaveled a hearing to a close and walked out while Democrats continued to testify -- but with their microphones shut off.
The hearing's announced topic was the USA Patriot Act, which granted broad new powers to federal law enforcement after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The Republicans had presented several witnesses at earlier hearings who supported the administration's call for reauthorizing the legislation. But yesterday, when four witnesses handpicked by the Democrats launched into a broad denunciations of President Bush's war on terrorism and the condition of detainees at the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, Chairman F. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-Wis.) showed his pique.
He urged witnesses to "wrap it up" and repeatedly told committee members that their time for questioning had expired.
"We ought to stick to the subject," the chairman scolded at the end. "The Patriot Act has nothing to do with Guantanamo Bay. The Patriot Act has nothing to do with enemy combatants. The Patriot Act has nothing to do with indefinite detentions."
"Will the gentleman yield?" Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Tex.) asked.
"No, I will not yield," replied Sensenbrenner, 61, the heir to a paper fortune who is known for a brusque insistence on decorum. He completed his reproof of the witnesses and left the Rayburn House Office Building hearing room amid a cacophony of protests from Democrats seeking to be recognized.
Oh, but that was about civil liberties, and who gives a rat's ass about those, anyway? The Repugs are talking about offshore drilling which would lower gas prices! And the communist Pelosi walked out on them, betraying the American people!
Of course, meanwhile back in the Real World, gas prices have been falling at the pump for the last three weeks straight. Without drilling in ANWAR, without drilling offshore, without drilling any more than anyone was to begin with:
Gas prices have eased substantially in recent weeks amid signs that global demand for petroleum products is slowing.
Ah. Supply and demand. The Free Market. Well.
Or maybe it's the fact that the Repugs have been standing in an empty building talking to themselves into dead microphones. Maybe they should do that more often.