On Friday October 5, 2012, Republican Speaker Pro Tempore Scott DesJarlais (R-Tenn.) brought down the gavel which instantly cut off microphones despite pleas from Congressman Hinojosa and Congressman Elijah Cummings, (D-Maryland) who wanted to continue to use the pro forma sessions to address a bill for farmers and the economy.
The slamming of the gavel signals the C-Span mics to be instantly turned off. DesJarlais walked off, leaving Reps Hinojosa and Cummings having to shout about helping farmers and about the fiscal cliff.
"This just proves that House Republicans are only interested in preventing Congress from moving forward for the American people they represent," said Rep. Hinojosa. "They wonder why this Congress is called the "Do Nothing Congress", well here is a good example of what they have done throughout the 112th Congress. What I wanted to address are the needs and concerns of our farmers. This affects not only the farmers and their families in my state of Texas; it affects every farmer across the nation. I could not believe they, the Republicans, agreed not to recognize me and my colleague Rep. Cummings simply to support their continued strategy of doing nothing."
Shutting off Democrats who want to bring up legislation discussion on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives seems to be a growing trend with Republicans. Last week House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer were not allowed to speak.
Last December of 2011, Hoyer and Rep. Chris Van Hollen, who had to shout about payroll tax cuts after their microphones were silenced.
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