House Republican Leader John A. Boehner didn't have a vote in the contentious race for chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, but that didn't stop him from leveling a pretty harsh assessment of the result.
"This decision sends a troubling signal from a Majority that has promised to govern from the center," Boehner said in a statement from his office.
Republicans on both sides of Capitol Hill privately lauded the outcome because the elevation of a more liberal Henry A. Waxman will make it easier for the GOP to target the Democrats' newly elected chairman with partisan labels. But most believe Waxman will be much harder for them to work with than his more moderate predecessor.
"They moved away from Chairman [John] Dingell [D-Mich.] because he is committed to approaching energy and environmental issues in a manner that protects American jobs," Boehner continued. "It is a disturbing sign that the leaders of the next Congress will be making decisions based not on what is best for the country, but for well-funded special interests whose priorities are far different from those of the vast majority of Americans."
And, of course, Boehner had to take a shot at card-check, the Democrats' legislation to ease union-organizing requirements by allowing labor leaders to forgo a secret-ballot election. "Ironically, the decision [to replace Dingell] was made in a secret ballot election — a process that Democrats want to end in workplaces across America to help one of those special interests."
Full statement after the jump.
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