Reminiscent of Clint Eastwood and the empty chair, a group of House Republicans stood outside the empty U.S. Senate building Sunday to slam an absent Harry Reid for taking “a lazy break” rather than reconvening the senate to negotiate over the looming government shutdown.
The proverbial ball was in the Senate’s hands Sunday after the House passed a continuing resolution with two amendments the Senate vowed to strip out; one that would delay implementing Obamacare for one year and the other that repeals a tax on medical devices.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi bailed on her party Saturday and was absent for the vote as she was “outside Washington” celebrating her 50th wedding anniversary, Politico reported.
According to Politico, approximately 20 House Republicans stood on the steps of the Senate and accused Reid of going home and trying to run out the clock “rather than negotiating with GOP leadership over the weekend.”
“I’m glad now to invite to the microphone our distinguished majority leader in the Senate,” said Rep. Bill Johnson of Ohio, gesturing to an empty microphone as House members guffawed. “I’m sorry, Harry’s not here today. Maybe he’ll show up later.”
“This is the old football strategy. When you get to where you want to be in a football game, you run out the clock. You run out the clock because you think you like where you are,” said Rep. Tim Griffin of Arkansas, cradling a pigskin for effect. “Sounds like my way or the highway is the Senate way.”
“Negotiations require two sides. Tim, a football game requires two teams. Picking up your football and going home makes for a lousy game,” said Kevin Cramer of North Dakota. “I’m here to work through the weekend, and I expect the Senate to do the same.”
“The Senate, led by Harry Reid, makes it clear: ‘Well, we’re going to take a lazy break until Monday at 2 o’clock,’” said Louie Gohmert of Texas.
A woman in the crowd of onlookers listened to the House members speak for about “25 minutes” before she lost it and “screamed” at them, “The American people elected Barack Obama. He was elected by the American people, not you!”
“We were elected,” Rep. Dana Rohrabache responded with a chuckle, the article said.