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Archive of entries posted on November 2011

Can a Court Resolve the Virginia Senate Deadlock?

Virginia Democrats may go to court over the issue of whether the Lieutenant Governor can break ties on organizational matters in the Senate. As indicated in a previous post, I am skeptical about the merits of this claim. (Another useful resource on this subject is the website of the National Conference of State Legislatures, which [...]

What Happens to the Supercommittee’s Records?

This story by Richard Lardner of the Associated Press (“Debt-reduction ‘supercommittee’ hid in plain sight”) discusses how the “Supercommittee” has conducted its business largely behind closed doors. The article cites this blog’s view that the committee’s narrow interpretation of the term “meeting” as used in its open meeting rule enabled it to conduct virtually all [...]

The Use and Abuse of Legislative Privilege- Canadian Edition

The Speaker of the Canadian Parliament (who is 32 years old!) issued this ruling last week in response to a point of order. The issue concerned the action of a Government Minister who had “tabled a document” with the House detailing a political donation made by a particular named individual. The point of order was [...]

Judge Griffith Will Be Delivering The Leventhal Lecture This Tuesday

This Tuesday, November 15, from 12 pm to 2 pm, the Administrative Law and Agency Practice Section of the D.C. Bar will host the Annual Harold Leventhal Lecture. Our speaker will be the Honorable Thomas B. Griffith of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Judge Griffith will speak on “Congress in the [...]

Breaking a Tie in the Senate

(Update- see this more recent post on the possibility of a court challenge to the Lieutenant Governor’s vote). It appears the Virginia Senate, following Tuesday’s elections, will be equally divided, with Republicans holding 20 seats and Democrats holding 20 seats. The Democrats want a shared-power arrangement, meaning that committee chairmanships and other responsibilities would be [...]

The Solyndra Subpoenas and the White House Response

The House Energy and Commerce Committee has issued subpoenas to the White House Chief of Staff and the Chief of Staff to the Vice President, seeking documents relating to the Solyndra loan scandal. Specifically, each subpoena asks for “[a]ll documents referring or relating in any way to the $535 million loan guarantee issued to Solyndra, [...]