New Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) received the gavel from Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), and Republicans assumed majority of the House of Representatives on Jan. 5 as the 112th Congressional session commenced on Capitol Hill.
Members of the GOP-led chamber have pledged to challenge President Barack Obama and Democrats on several domestic issues, including government spending and the healthcare law.
House Republicans have vowed to vote at least once a week on bills that cut Federal spending, beginning with a scheduled vote on Jan. 6 that would reduce lawmakers' office budgets by 5 percent. The GOP majority is also expected to move quickly on legislation that would repeal Obamacare.
During his swearing-in ceremony on Jan. 5, Boehner acknowledged that his role as Speaker could be short lived if Republicans don't follow through on promises they made to Americans.
"They have reminded us that everything here is on loan from them. That includes this gavel, which I accept cheerfully and gratefully, knowing I am but its caretaker," said Boehner, according to a speech excerpt obtained by FOX News. "What they want is a government that is honest, accountable and responsive to their needs."
Lawmakers are trying to win back the faith and trust of Americans, who were disenchanted by the previous Congress. According to Gallup polls, the 111th Congress received an average approval rating of 25 percent over the course of 2009 and 2010, which is among the lowest average ratings for lawmakers that Gallup has recorded over the last 20 years.