|Time for Hardball||
10 January 2022
Cogito Ergo Non Serviam
Congressman Jim Jordan (R-OH) is a key witness in the investigation into the failed coup attempt of January 6, 2021. He is a hard-line supporter of President Trump and a man who, at best, ignored complaints of sexual abuse in the Ohio State Wrestling program where he was assistant coach. In a decent democracy, he would have a job in the private sector. Yet, he was in constant contact with the ex-president, and he has information that will prove useful to the investigation. The fact that he refuses to cooperate raises some questions, but the Speaker has special levers to use in persuading a member of the House. Ms. Pelosi must use them.
Mr. Jordan was appointed to the January 6 Committee by Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy but rejected by Speaker Pelosi. This lead to the withdrawal of all Mr. McCarthy's appointees. The two Republicans on the committee are there because Ms. Pelosi put them there. In short, Mr. Jordan's partisan bias helped create the current situation.
He is now refusing to cooperate after receiving a request for his voluntary assistance from the committee. Were he not a member of Congress, the next move would probably be a subpoena demanding his testimony and documents. However, in litigious America, there is some debate about whether Congress can subpoena one of its own members. The arguments favor allowing such a subpoena, but it would take a long time in the courts to sort it out. There is also a chance that the courts would decline to hear such a case that is entirely within the legislative branch. Mr. Jordan and the rest of the insurrectionists are hoping that the GOP retakes the House in 2022 and that the investigation will die in January 2023 as a result. Ms. Pelosi can start making Mr. Jordan's life miserable immediately, however, and she should for as long as it takes to get him to do his civic duty.
First and foremost, Mr. Jordan sits on the Judiciary Committee (as ranking member) and the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. As part of the latter, he serves on the subcommittees for: Healthcare, Benefits and Administrative Rules; Government Operations; and the Corona Virus. These are all fairly important, and she should begin the process of suspending him from all of these. He would be banned from participating in all committee activities until he cooperates.
Second, Ms. Pelosi can begin a process of moving his office endlessly. This is petty and mean, and it is precisely what the doctor ordered. Mr. Jordan's office is currently in the Rayburn Office Building. He should immediately be instructed to pack his stuff and move to the Longworth Building. As soon as he has unpacked, he must be moved to the Cannon Building. And then to the Rayburn building. It is inconvenient and will waste much of his time.
Third, the Democratic Party needs to start running ads in Ohio dredging up the whole Ohio State sex scandal and tying it to his unwillingness to cooperate. The message here would be "why is he always trying to hide things?"
The US Congress would benefit from studying the Chief Whip in British politics. Here, the job is mostly for status given to a senior member of the leadership so he or she has a title and a place at the table. In the UK, the Whip is in charge of party discipline. Not only does the Whip keep one's own party in line, but he or she is often well-positioned to pressure members of other parties.
If ignoring subpoenas becomes standard practice, the Congress loses its oversight capacities. That cannot be allowed. Mr. Jordan and other members of congress have vulnerabilities as members that <s. Pelosi must attack. Time to play hardball.
© Copyright 2022 by The Kensington Review, Jeff Myhre, PhD, Editor. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent. Produced using Ubuntu Linux.