On the whole that might be true, but for some lawmakers, silence really is golden.
Rep. Timothy Johnson (R-Ill.) tops the list of the House members who addressed their colleagues on the floor the least during the 111th Congress, according to data provided by C-SPAN.
The Illinois legislator is not shy, however. He is famous on Capitol Hill for keeping in contact with his constituents by calling them regularly, sometimes on his cell phone between votes.
Over on the other side of the aisle, Rep. Ben Chandler apparently doesn’t go in for speeches much, either. The Kentucky Democrat, who was a GOP target during the last election, spoke only three times on the House floor in 2009 and 2010.
For someone who opts not to broadcast his political opinions very often, Chandler co-chairs an unlikely panel: the Congressional Public Broadcasting Caucus, a role he shares with Rep. Earl BlumenauerEarl BlumenauerFearing crackdown, marijuana advocates turn to Congress House Democrat introduces bill to amend presidential removal procedures Marijuana legalization grows closer with Senate tax proposal MORE (D-Ore.).
According to C-SPAN, Blumenauer addressed the House in the 111th Congress 111 times.
Perhaps not surprisingly, spokesmen for Johnson and Chandler declined to talk about their bosses’ silence.