Fitzpatrick Bangs Gavel On Democrats Hoyer and Van Hollen

Credit where it’s due.  Mike Fitzpatrick, our normally go-along-to-get-along “Republican” representative in Congress, banged the gavel to end an attempt by Democrats Steny Hoyer and Chris Van Hollen to introduce a bill to extend the cut in Social Security FICA funding by two months.  Congressional Republicans want to extend the FICA tax rate for a year.

Sure he was just doing as he was told by leadership, but at least he didn’t ask that the task be given to someone else.

[T]wo top Democrats, Reps. Steny H. Hoyer and Chris Van Hollen, demanded to be recognized to try to force a vote on the two-month extension. House Republicans have blocked that deal, which is strongly backed by President Obama, and are holding out for an extension that covers all of 2012.

Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick, a Pennsylvania Republican who was serving as the presiding officer, banged his gavel to close the session Wednesday morning even as the two Democrats were demanding to be recognized.

“You’re walking out, you’re walking away, just as so many Republicans have walked away from middle-class taxpayers,,” Mr. Hoyer shouted after Mr. Fitzpatrick as he marched off the floor, leaving the two Democrats, both from Maryland, to themselves in the cavernous chamber.

Down the hall in his office, House Speaker John A. Boehner gathered top Republicans to try to figure out a path forward.