Today the new 113th Congress was officially sworn in on Capitol Hill, ending the 112th’s right-wing reign in the House.
The new class also re-elected House Speaker John Boehner; Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi was nominated to take the seat but did not rack up enough votes.
According to Fox News:
At least 25 of the House’s 233 Republicans are said to have reservations about voting John Boehner in for another term as speaker, Fox News has learned — a number significant enough to tee up a potential drama on the floor Thursday.
In the end, eight Republicans deflected from Boehner. But even with that said, the new Congress is chock-full of change this time around.
In fact, the entire demographic of the new class is both historic and welcoming. This is to date the most diverse and representative congressional class in history:
There are more women in Congress now than ever before; in fact, 20 female Senators were sworn in; four Republicans and 16 Democrats.
We will have the first openly gay senator, Tammy Baldwin, who is from Wisconsin.
Then there is Tim Scott, the first African American Republican senator from the South since Reconstruction.
There are 84 new members of the House and 13 new Senators.
White males will be the new minority in the Democratic Party.
Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii will be the first Hindu ever elected to Congress (she’s also one of the first female combat veterans, having served a year in Iraq with the Hawaii National Guard and a second tour in Kuwait.)
Also a veteran, Tammy Duckworth of Illinois will be a part of the new class. She’s also an amputee.
The new class sees the largest number of Hispanics in history…30 Democrats to be exact!
Kyrsten Sinema will be the first openly bisexual woman in Congress.
But even with all that diversity in the Democratic population, the House Republican conference remains…stagnant.
The House Republican conference continues to be dominated by white men. In the new Congress, all but one of the 21 committees are chaired by white men. For Republicans, women and minorities did not fare well in the latest elections. Of the 35 newly-elected Republicans to the House, only four are women.
Well, old habits die slow we guess.
A BIG welcome to the 113th Congress…let’s do it better this time around!