From today’s Washington Post:
House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) shows no sign of resigning over the Mark Foley-House page scandal. But the mere suggestion that he might do so raises an intriguing political and constitutional question: Who would replace him while Congress is in recess?
The answer, it appears, is on a piece of paper locked away in the House clerk’s office.
In a little-noticed action taken nearly four years ago, the House amended its rules dealing with the “continuity of Congress” in emergencies and the succession of speakers. The rule, cited recently in Roll Call, directs the speaker to “deliver to the Clerk a list of Members in the order in which each shall act as Speaker pro tempore . . . in the case of a vacancy in the office of Speaker.” [full text]
In a Kmareka exclusive, a photocopy of this secret listâ€”which details the proposed order of successionâ€”has been obtained from a covert operative within the House of Representatives and is reproduced below. For obvious reasons, the list is under constant revision.