“It is my right to seat and unseat any member of Congress I want”-Nancy Pelosi
Nancy Pelosi has recently been in a battle to unseat an Republican Congresswoman who won a tight election, an election that was already certified, in an effort to further cement her parties power in the House. The remarks above were made in an effort to justify her ongoing battle, many are now asking if this is even real, can the Speaker of the House simply unseat anyone they want to?
From PJ Media:
But Pelosi’s interpretation of her powers as Speaker of the House is just as bad as those who believed that Vice President Pence had the power to pick and choose which electors from each state would be counted. As political science professor and Townhall contributor Eddie Zipperer noted, Pelosi “needs to read the SCOTUS interpretation of the clause she’s referring to in Powell v McCormack. SCOTUS says a seat cannot be denied to a duly elected Rep who meets the constitutional qualifications.”
The case in question here, Powell v. McCormack, involves Rep. Adam Clayton Powell (D-N.Y.), a member of Congress who was excluded by Congress in 1967 following allegations of corruption. Powell was reelected by constituents and regained his seat after the Supreme Court ruled his favor that Congress did not have the power to exclude him because he was duly elected and satisfied the requirements of Article I Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution.
Article I Section 5 of the U.S. Constitution does state that “Each house shall be the judge of the … qualifications of its own members,” but explains that a two-thirds majority vote is required to expel a member.
Under the Federal Contested Elections Act, the House Administration Committee “may recommend, and the House may approve by a simple majority vote, a decision affirming the right of the contestee to the seat, may seat the contestant, or find that neither party is entitled to be finally seated and declare a vacancy.” But, the Speaker of the House has no authority to unilaterally seat or unseat a duly elected member of Congress, as Pelosi suggested.
Many are calling out Pelosi’s remarks as misinformation designed to sway public opinion on her effort to unseat an elected representative. As we have written previously, the election in this case was extremely close and perhaps there was room for Democrats to issue a challenge. The challenge issued was not done in the normal way, rather than go through the court to settle this matter it was taken into the mire of Congress.
This election challenge reeks of irony and hypocrisy as Democrats crucified former President Donald Trump over is challenge to the 2020 presidential election. Furthermore Democrats made it a point to try and erase Trump’s legacy forever for contesting an election.