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Tuesday he was one of the few Democrats to vote against the fiscal cliff then Thursday he made another vote against party lines.
The Democratic Congressman chose a republican in the all important vote for speaker of the house who's not in congress, former General Colin Powell.
"My colleagues know I'm a blue dog Democrat. I try to do the right thing for the country," said Cooper.
Cooper says he chose Powell because he believes the House needs a leader who can work with both parties.
"Congress has rarely in all of American History been more broken," said Cooper. "That sort of broad appeal is really important to strengthen the institution because we need a functioning Congress and right now we do not have one."
Cooper says the recent decision not to vote on aid for Hurricane Sandy as an example of how the House is broken.
As for that fiscal cliff deal, Cooper says he voted against it because he couldn't support a bill that made the deficit worse.
"There were a lot of things in there that should not have been in that bill for example tax give-a-ways for NASCAR, motor sports, Hollywood film producers, Puerto Rican rum producers. Why is trash like that in the bill," said Cooper.
Vanderbilt Political Science professor Bruce Oppenheimer says the votes may get attention but they could also end up costing him key committee assignments.
"He's a very bright capable guy who in many ways should be more influential in Congress than he is," said Oppenheimer.
Thursday, January 3 2013, 10:38 PM CST
Houston brother will be his own attorney in court
June 18, 2013 13:02 GMT
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A Roane County man will face federal gun violation charges next month without an attorney.
The Knoxville News Sentinel (http://bit.ly/17VlXpM ) reported Rocky Joe Houston will represent himself on a charge of possession of a gun by a felon.
The charge came after Houston earlier represented himself in state court on charges stemming from a police chase. He was convicted of evading arrest and reckless endangerment.
Houston and his brother, Leon Houston, were tried, but not convicted, in the 2006 shooting deaths of a Roane County deputy and his ride-along companion.
In federal court, Rocky Joe Houston is claiming the officer who charged him with the felony had no legal authority.
Information from: Knoxville News Sentinel, http://www.knoxnews.com
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