It's been a rough couple of weeks for John Boehner. He was all but shut out of the fiscal cliff deal, dissed by his own party, and suffered 12 GOP defections when re-elected as speaker. But did he emerge from all of this as a loser? It's not that simple.
The Massachusetts Republican left Congress this week after losing in a contentious race to Democrat Elizabeth Warren. But if John Kerry is confirmed as the next secretary of state, Scott Brown could be back on the campaign trail in weeks.
The framers of the Constitution didn't spell out all the responsibilities of the speaker of the House. In practice, one of those duties has been engaging in one-on-one negotiations with a president on important policy issues. But John Boehner says no more — even with new fiscal fights looming.
On Friday, it was confirmed that President Obama won the election with 332 electoral votes tallied in his column. Of course this is old news. But the formal count mandated by the Constitution took place before a joint session of Congress, heavy on ceremony and light on attendance.
In an interview with NPR, Pelosi said the GOP has "made enormous contributions to the success of our country." But she added: "There are many members in the Republican caucus who do not believe in government. And bless their hearts, they act upon their beliefs."
The drama over the fiscal cliff and the familiar up-against-a-deadline dysfunction of Congress has largely overshadowed the leave-taking of some Capitol Hill originals. A look at the legacies of Barney Frank, Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, Olympia Snowe, Richard Lugar and Joe Lieberman.
Despite what has been called a status quo election, the 113th Congress will bring with it generational changes and some history, including the first all-female delegation for a state, and the fewest number of military veterans since World War II. Here are some of the noteworthy newcomers.
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