'Non-Voting' Delegates Lose 'Symbolic' Vote | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

'Non-Voting' Delegates Lose 'Symbolic' Vote

Play associated audio

By Manuel Quinones, Capitol News Connection

Although D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton is known as a "non-voting delegate," there were times she was allowed to cast a vote. In one of their first acts as House leaders, Republicans put an end to that Wednesday.

In parliamentary language, non-voting delegates like Norton and the representatives of U.S. territories were permitted to cast votes when the House operated as a Committee of the Whole, or like a committee instead of a chamber. That allowed the delegates to vote on certain amendments, but not final passage of a bill. But Republicans put an end to those votes Wednesday calling them unconstitutional.

"The effect is chiefly: residents of the District of Columbia will no longer know how I would have voted on very important matters," Norton says.

In recent decades, delegates have gained and lost these "symbolic" voting rights in a tug of war between Democrats and Republicans. Democrats granted the privilege in 1993, Republicans rescinded it a few years later, Speaker Nancy Pelosi restored the practice after Democrats took control in 2007.

"There's no conclusion that one can draw except that it is partisanship," Norton says.

Five of the House delegates, including Norton, are Democrats, the other is an independent.

NPR

Lost — Then Found — Along The Border, Objects Become Art

A photographer's journey along the U.S.-Mexico border turned up dramatic images of lost possessions. Those found items were later made into instruments that sound just like that desolate landscape.
NPR

Need A New Sweet Potato Recipe For Your Thanksgiving Table? Try Gnocchi

Because some cooks like to mix it up for Thanksgiving, we offer a Found Recipe from our archives: Julia Della Croce's purple sweet potato gnocchi.
NPR

Some In Las Vegas Not Sold On Obama's Immigration Pitch

President Obama made his sales pitch for why five million people should be protected from deportation, Friday. But many in Las Vegas, where Obama defended the executive action, aren't happy about the changes.
NPR

Car Ride Service Puts Gender In The Driver's Seat

Car share programs are extremely popular, but so are concerns for safety. NPR's Tess Vigeland talks to Stella Mateo, founder of SheRides, which allows passengers to choose the gender of their driver.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.