Is Mike Johnson’s Leadership in Jeopardy?

Is Mike Johnson's Leadership in Jeopardy?

( – House Republicans are experiencing considerable discord despite maintaining a majority. In October 2023, after former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) worked alongside Democrats to pass a spending bill to avoid a government shutdown, the Freedom Caucus ousted him from the leadership position. Electing the new leader, Mike Johnson (R-LA), took weeks amid infighting. However, his position might be in jeopardy, too, and Johnson is pushing back against opposition.

In March, Johnson advanced a hefty spending bill, $1.2 trillion, that angered House Republicans. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) took the opportunity to file a motion to vacate, even while voting for the bill was still underway. She later clarified that she meant the action to signify more of a “warning” for Johnson to conform with what the House GOP wanted than as a “pink slip.” For a time, the controversy went by the wayside, and business as usual resumed. Now, however, another Republican has become involved.

Recently, Greene brought up the motion to vacate again, escalating the issue on April 16. She sent a five-page memo to her colleagues detailing Johnson’s failings and called on her fellow Republicans to avoid “a complete and total surrender” to the Speaker.

Greene said should the “actions by the leader of our conference continue, then [they] are not a Republican Party — [they] are a uniparty.” She cautioned that following such a path would lead to “self-inflicted destruction.” Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) said he would co-sponsor the motion, laying the necessary groundwork for a vote to vacate the seat.

According to Massie, he spoke directly with Johnson about moving forward with the motion and called on the speaker to resign. Yet, Johnson said he had no intention of resigning and considered someone trying to oust him from the seat an “absurd notion” when they’re all simply trying to get work done. Massie believed the vote would move forward and Johnson would fail as Speaker by more votes than McCarthy had just a few short months ago.

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