The most important Committee that you've never heard of is the Rules Committee. Every bill goes through rules and it's critical for the governing majority to have a solid rules Committee made up of member whom you can count on in a crisis.
After nearly 20 years in office, Senate President Bob Burns understands the importance of Rules and constructed a bulletproof Committee--he appointed himself as Chairman and filled the rest of the Republican seats with other members of the Senate Leadership team--Senate Majority Leader Chuck Gray and Senate Whip Pamela Gorman.
Senate leaders are elected by their peers and a Leadership post comes with more than a fancy office and great floor seats. It brings with it the responsibility of supporting the majority program and watching the Senate President's back.
That's why the Capitol Community was stunned today when the Senate Rules Committee voted down the Governor's Sales Tax bill by a 5 to 1 vote with President Burns as the lone yes. Not since Uriah the Hittite was cut down by the Canaanites has one man been so thoroughly abandoned on the field of battle.
The Senate Republican caucus was aghast and the only speculation that I heard from Senators this afternoon was whether to remove them from leadership before the end of session--like the next caucus--or after Sine Die.