The video: An emotional Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) took the gavel as the new Speaker of the House of Representatives on Wednesday, promising to restore trust in Congress through "real transparency, greater accountability, and a renewed focus on our Constitution." Boehner said the Tea Party-fueled wave that swept aside outgoing speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats served as a reminder that Congress exists to serve the people, and the privilege of running the show can be short-lived. (Watch a clip below.) "The people voted to end business as usual," Boehner said, "and today we begin to carry out their instructions."
The reaction:
Boehner's maiden speech as Speaker was a "home run," says Jennifer Rubin in The Washington Post. It perfectly summed up his party's "core message: We are humble. We heard the voters. We're here to end the spend-a-thon." So, Boehner believes Congress is "the people's House," says Steve Benen in Washington Monthly. "It is a fine phrase, and an admirable sentiment." The trouble is, the "people" Boehner and his allies seem most concerned about are lobbyists and the rich. Watch part of Boehner's address below: