Some members of the new class look to be just as hard to control, if not more difficult. Rep.-elect Steve Stockman, R-Texas, for example, has already vowed to vote against Boehner for speaker on Thursday. “The ‘fiscal cliff’ spending package negotiated by Congressman Boehner was the final unacceptable straw,” he said in a statement.
Furthermore, Boehner will find little sympathy from Democrats, many of whom revel in casting the opposing party as “extremists.” As the last few votes of the 112th Congress showed, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California still has an iron grip over her caucus. She was able to keep most, sometimes all, House Democrats in line against Boehner.
“Going forward, if it’s ‘my way or the highway,’ as most of the action Republicans took this Congress, they will find a unified, united Democratic Caucus,” Pelosi spokesman Nadeam Elshami said. “But if it’s a Republican Conference looking to find common ground, then they will find willing partners.”
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.