Posts Tagged ‘Sen. Robert Byrd’

Special Session on Byrd Seat at Impasse

Sunday, July 18th, 2010

The Associated Press is reporting a special election for the Byrd U. S. Senate Seat is in doubt.

West Virginia’s Future in Congress

Friday, July 16th, 2010

Cecelia Mason a West Virginia Public Radio correspondent prepared a perspective on a Congress without Byrd or Mollohan and the impact on our State.  It’s worth a click and read.

Manchin’s Decision

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Many readers of phillipsbillboard do not read The Charleston Gazette on a daily basis nor desire to.  There is an excellent historic perspective prepared by The Associated Press on appointees being named to vacant U. S. Senate seats in West Virginia.

It could explain why Governor Manchin does not wish to occupy the seat of the late Senator Robert C. Byrd even on a temporary basis.  The AP research has revealed none of the five West Virginians appointed to vacant U. S. Senate seats survived the next election – one decided not to run; the rest lost.

It is understandable why Governor Manchin wants to complete his term.  First, he promised.  Secondly, if there is no special election until November 2012 he remains politically safe.

There is one element important to West Virginia that may be being over looked.  That being seniority in the United States Senate.  Senator Byrd proved its importance.

Should Governor Manchin or anyone he names enter the Senate now they would gain over two year of seniority – assuming they were elected to the full term in 2012.  That may not sound important today but it is.  Even more so in twenty years – as we know once elected most Senators remain in office for several terms.

Let’s say there is even a small turnover in Senate membership in the 2010 election.  That would move our West Virginia Senator up immediately in seniority. 

This issue should be paramount in the decision making going on in The Governor’s Mansion after Senator Byrd’s funeral.

Senator Byrd We Need You

Monday, March 8th, 2010

Senator Byrd is needed in the United States Senate more than ever.  He needs to be there to protect the Senate from itself. 

It is well known the Obama administration is pressuring Congress to use a process known as reconciliation to pass health care reform. 

After the congressional budget act passed in 1974 (I worked there at the time) Congress started to abuse the spending and revenue targets established in the budget resolution passed each year. 

Senator Byrd stepped in to stop using the budget reconciliation process to enact legislation that had nothing to do in meeting the requirements of the budget resolution.  

He introduced legislation which was passed in 1985 and became permanent in 1990. It is known as the “Byrd Rule”. 

Senators are permitted under the “Byrd Rule” to ask for a point of order objecting to provisions in the reconciliation legislation they believe does not meet the requirements of the budget resolution.  After that it is up to the President of the Senate or presiding officer.  In practice, the Senate Parliamentarian makes the final decision. 

Despite the fact Senator Byrd voted for health care reform on Christmas Eve let’s hope he is well enough to be present to stop the abuse of reconciliation as he did in l985.

Manchin Declares War on EPA

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

Governor Manchin is preparing to lead a battle against the Obama Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) after its decision to review 23 pending coal-mine permits.  He spoke with MetroNews Talkline from Berlin, Germany.

Joining in the war Obama has declared on the economy of West Virginia is Congresswoman Capito.  She expressed her concerns about the economic impact the EPA decision will have on the Appalachian region.

In a related attack on West Virginia is a new Senate climate bill (Cap and Trade) being pushed by President Obama in Congress.  Senators Byrd & Rockefeller are concerned about this legislation today in The Charleston Gazette.

Other soldiers in the WV congressional delegation joining Representative Capito in voting against the American Clean Energy & Security Act (Cap and Trade) in June were Representatives Mollohan & Rahall.

On the front lines already has been the Friends of Coal and a new organization FACES of Coal fighting to protect the economy of West Virginia communities.

Let’s hope Representatives Mollohan & Rahall soon take up arms against the Obama administration as it attempts to shut down the mining industry. 

The votes of our West Virginia delegation are important to the success of the Obama plan to restructure healthcare.  President Obama should think about that when he decides to attack our coal miners, their communities and our economy.

West Virginia Voter Surveys

Sunday, September 6th, 2009

Our readers have asked if I could get a copy of the recent voter opinion surveys conducted by Mark Blankenship Enterprises (MBE).  I gather not all the media have reported on the findings. 

The first survey addresses political favorability ratings and economic issues.  Government spending and global warming issues survey reflects West Virginians believe the federal government is spending too much money.  Finally, health care reform and Mountaintop Mining is the subject of the third survey.

You may view each of these surveys by clicking on the links below or visit

Political Favorability Ratings and Economic Issues

Government Spending and Global Warming Issues

Health Care Reform and Mountaintop Mining

Byrd Health Mystery

Friday, June 26th, 2009

The Huddle – a must read morning briefing on the lastest congressional news contains the piece below this morning.

Byrd Health Mystery:  The reality is that a lot of key people remain in the dark about Sen. Robert Byrd’s condition.  From Roll Call’s Jessica Brady:  ‘Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-Wa.) has not spoken in recent weeks with his home-state colleague.  Sen. Robert Byrd (D), who has been in the hospital since last month with an infection.

‘Asked Wednesday whether he had spoken with Byrd, Rockefeller said. ‘Nobody has.’

‘I have not been in touch with Senator Byrd directly but I have sent him my well wishes.’ Rockefeller later added in a statement. …Sources have said Senate Democratic leaders and Byrd’s own staff is largely in the dark about his true condition.  Byrd’s office has declined to comment about where he is receiving medical treatment.’