04/01/2007 12:02 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

BREAKING: Shays Attempts Party Switch, Denied By Pelosi

Just in from my email box (link coming)



WASHINGTON - Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected a request by Republican Congressman Christopher Shays (CT-04) to switch to the Democratic caucus and maintain his seniority. Shays, a pro-war Republican from a largely anti-war district, is known for his allegedly moderate positions. Speaker Pelosi did not feel she could retain credibility as a leader of the Democratic Party if she allowed Shays into her caucus.

"I respect Congressman Shays recognition that he is the last of a dying breed: the New England Republican," Speaker Pelosi said. "But I cannot in good faith welcome anyone into the Democratic Party who has repeatedly done all in his power to further the Bush administration's agenda for war without end."

"The American people resoundingly voted Democrats into the majority this past November because they want to see a government of reform and accountability. Chris Shays has repeatedly shown that he's simply uninterested in upholding his Constitutional duty to be a check on the Bush administration. I have no reason to believe that he would take his oath of office any more seriously as a Democrat."

"The people of Connecticut - particularly Connecticut's blog readers - would never forgive the Democratic Party for accepting a man like Chris Shays into our caucus," Pelosi's internet director Karina Newton said. "If Shays wants there to be a Democrat representing the Connecticut 4th, he should vote for one in 2008."

Shays expressed interest in switching parties shortly after his reelection in November. He formally requested a switch Friday morning, asking Speaker Pelosi to retain his seniority on the Homeland Security and Financial Services committees, as well as his parking spot near the elevator in Longworth House Office Building. Pelosi rejected the request on Saturday after speaking with other members of Connecticut's congressional delegation for their input.

Happy April Fools Day!

Cross posted at My Left Nutmeg