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House Republicans Consider Changing Rules to Assist Speaker

House Speaker Mike Johnson (Credits: NBC Montana)

House Republican leaders are contemplating a strategic move together with growing tension within the party, considering incorporating language into the debate over a $95 billion foreign aid package that would make it harder to remove Speaker Mike Johnson from his position, according to a report from Punchbowl News.

The possibility arises as Rep. Thomas Massie, supported by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, has introduced a motion to vacate the chair, aiming to oust Speaker Johnson from his leadership role. However, Greene has yet to call for a vote on the matter.

Currently, House rules allow any member to trigger a vote to remove the Speaker, and with the slim majority held by Republicans, only a few defectors would be necessary to pass such a motion with the support of Democrats.

Speaker Mike Johnson (Credits: Los Angeles Times)

In an effort to avert potential chaos and a leadership crisis, House Republican leaders are exploring the idea of amending the rules governing debate on the foreign aid legislation to raise the threshold for filing motions to vacate. While this move could bolster Johnson’s position, it risks further alienating conservatives within the party.

Johnson, faced with the dilemma of potentially losing his speakership or advancing aid for Ukraine, has opted to proceed with plans for a vote on the aid package, which also includes provisions for Israel and Taiwan.

During a recent meeting in Johnson’s office, an aide reportedly reminded him that he couldn’t pursue all his priorities simultaneously, underscoring the challenging position he finds himself in.

Meanwhile, House GOP leaders are pushing for the passage of a comprehensive legislative package, which includes foreign aid, border security measures, and other provisions like a revised TikTok ban.

Speaker Mike Johnson (Credits: Rolling Stone)

However, progress on this front hit a roadblock when the House Rules Committee’s hearing stalled late Wednesday night, with further discussions scheduled for Thursday.

Conservative factions within the party, including the House Freedom Caucus, are staunchly opposed to any foreign aid package until outstanding changes are made to the Biden administration’s border security policies.

The potential change in rules governing motions to vacate reflects the ongoing power struggles within the Republican Party, highlighting the delicate balancing act faced by party leadership in crossing internal divisions while advancing legislative priorities.

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