First Republican Comes Out in Support of Greene’s Bid to Strip Speaker Johnson of Gavel

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene filed a motion of vacate against Johnson but it has yet to be activated.

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) announced on April 16 that he would co-sponsor a motion to strip House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) of the gavel.

Mr. Massie said that he told this to Mr. Johnson’s face during the House GOP’s weekly conference.

“I just told Mike Johnson in conference that I’m cosponsoring the motion to vacate that was introduced by

“He should pre-announce his resignation [as Boehner did], so we can pick a new speaker without ever being without a GOP Speaker,” posted Mr. Massie on X, formerly Twitter.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) put forth the motion to vacate earlier this month after the House passed a $1.2 trillion bill to fund most of the government.

Mr. Massie is the first Republican to back Ms. Greene’s motion.

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He referenced the case of former House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), who resigned in 2015 following pressure from the hardline conservative House Freedom Caucus over what they said was him not pushing back against the Obama administration.

Mr. Boehner was succeeded by former Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).

Mr. Massie’s announcement comes one day after Mr. Johnson announced that the House would take up four bills to give assistance to Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan, in addition to legislation to ban TikTok and seize frozen Russian assets and convert that into aid for Kyiv.

However, the House would send those separate bills as one package to the Senate, which passed in February a $95 billion bill that would give foreign assistance to Israel, Ukraine, the Indo-Pacific, and Gaza.

Ms. Greene (R-Ga.), an outspoken opponent of additional funding for Ukraine, spoke to reporters after the closed-door Republican conference meeting during which the plan was revealed.

“I am firmly against the plan as it stands right now,” Ms. Greene told reporters.

“This is such a scam and people are so done with it,” she added.

Ms. Greene did not say whether she would pursue an activation of her standing motion to vacate against Mr. Johnson in response to the announcement.

However, Rep. Kevin Hern (R-Okla.), the head of the Republican Study Committee, the largest GOP caucus, had a different take on the plan.

“I support him 100 percent,” Mr. Hern told reporters as he left the conference meeting. “This is about the Indo-Pacific, it’s about Taiwan … Ukraine, and Israel and some other national security issues.”

However, he said will wait until he sees the actual text of the proposals before he commits his support.

Likewise, Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.)—another opponent of funding for Ukraine—applauded Mr. Johnson for splitting the bills into separate packages rather than attempting to merge them into a single package.

“I like that it’s separate bills,” he said.

Mr. Biggs also reported that he doesn’t expect to see border security attached to the funding packages, an issue that has been a key concern for many Republican lawmakers.

However, Mr. Biggs later slammed Mr. Johnson for wanting to combine the bills into one package.

“I supported the plans Speaker Johnson announced in conference to allow the House to vote on the various aid packages separately. But his since-announced intent to merge them together before sending them to the Senate is wrong,” he posted on X.

“Israel funding should not be held hostage by Ukraine funding. The American people deserve to know where their senators stand on each funding component,” continued Mr. Biggs.

Mr. Biggs said that combining the bills into one package “is about as ridiculous as ranked-choice voting. The least popular option is the one that wins.”

Mr. Johnson’s proposal comes in the wake of an unprecedented direct attack on Israel by the Iranian regime.

Iran has claimed that the attack was retaliatory for an Israeli strike on a building hosting Iranian military generals in Syria.

The attack prompted a new sense of urgency among many lawmakers to pursue another attempt at foreign aid, particularly for Israel.

Mr. Johnson succeeded former Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) in October after the latter was ousted through a motion to vacate—the first time a speaker has been ousted that way.

Original News Source Link – Epoch Times

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