GOP Leaders In House Defeat Motion To Oust Speaker

GOP leaders in the United States House of Representatives are hoping they can now focus on the business of governing, rather than fending off efforts, from within their own conference, to remove the Speaker. This after a motion to vacate the Speakership was defeated overwhelmingly Wednesday.

Thursday, May 9th 2024, 5:21 pm

By: News 9, Alex Cameron


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GOP leaders in the United States House of Representatives are hoping they can now focus on the business of governing, rather than fending off efforts, from within their own conference, to remove the Speaker. This after a motion to vacate the Speakership was defeated overwhelmingly Wednesday.

Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) had been threatening to pull the trigger on the motion to vacate she filed recently, but after meeting face-to-face with Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) this week, it seemed possible she might hold off.

She did not. And the vast majority of her Republican colleagues showed their disapproval, first, by booing her announcement on the House floor, and then in joining with Democrats in tabling the motion 359-43.

Rep. Greene said afterward she fully expected the vote to go the way it did. "I didn't run for Congress to come up here and join the 'una-party'," Greene told a throng of reporters following the vote, "and the una-party was on full display today."

Each member of the Oklahoma delegation opposed the motion, but not all for the same reason.

"Marjorie wants to sow chaos and division within the Republican party," Congresswoman Stephanie Bice (R-Okla. 5) told reporters on the Capitol steps as Rep. Greene was on the floor announcing her motion.

Most, like Stephanie Bice, feel Speaker Johnson is doing a good job, with such a slim majority, and says Americans are tired of the far right trying to undermine him "They are angry, they have had enough, they want Republicans to govern," said a frustrated Rep. Bice. "This does not help!"

And then there's the question some in the delegation pose: If not Rep. Johnson, then who? "For all of [Representative Greene's] discussion about removing the Speaker," said Rep. Frank Lucas (R-Okla. 3) in an interview Monday, "where do we turn next? There’s nobody more conservative than Mike Johnson."

Not everyone in the state's delegation agrees with that, but Rep. Josh Brecheen (R-Okla. 2) expressed concern before Greene triggered the vote that there was no better alternative, from the standpoint of fiscal conservatives like himself. "You go into motion to vacate, you better have the numbers to come out with a conservative solution," said Brecheen in an interview Tuesday, "and my concern is you’ll come out with a less conservative solution right now." 

What the House came away with is a Speaker grateful for bipartisan support in defeating what he says was a misguided effort

"Hopefully," Speaker Johnson told reporters following the vote, "this is the end of the personality politics and the frivolous character assassination that has defined 118th Congress."

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