GOP Defectors Blow Up House Vote Amid Spending Protest
US House Speaker Mike Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana, center, during a news conference at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, US, on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024.
(Graeme Sloan/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

A group of just over a dozen House Republicans helped bring the chamber to a screeching halt on Wednesday in yet another stand against leadership.

Thirteen GOP lawmakers joined with all voting Democrats to help defeat a resolution that would have allowed consideration of a trio of measures that were scheduled for debate this week. Votes for the rest of the day got cancelled.

“The House is essentially frozen again. The GOP leadership cannot bring up any bills that are not already noticed on the suspension calendar. and conservatives just killed leadership’s ability to bring up any bills under a rule,” Punchbowl News founder Jake Sherman said in a post to X.

Among the defectors were Reps. Chip Roy (R-TX) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), members who have voiced opposition to a “topline” government spending deal struck between Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) and Democrats that the critics argue does not do enough to rein in the budget.

Greene told CNN that “people at home” do not want Johnson “getting rolled” in negotiations. “That’s not what we want to see out of our speaker,” Greene said,” Otherwise what’s the difference [between] Nancy Pelosi having the gavel and us having the majority?”

Another member who broke ranks, Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ), posted to X, “No border? No spending,” in an apparent reference to the ongoing push by Republicans to secure border security reforms as migrant crossings spike to record levels.

A government shutdown looms as a two-step continuing resolution (CR) passed in November funds certain federal agencies through January 19 while others would get money through February 2.

The GOP uprising seen on Wednesday is reminiscent of the revolt a small group of Republicans waged against then-Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) last year, which ended in him losing the gavel. Roy is even saying that he won’t rule out using the same “motion to vacate” mechanism that led to the no-confidence vote resulting in McCarthy’s ouster.

Johnson indicated that he is not concerned about facing a similar fate. “I don’t think I’m in any jeopardy of being vacated. It’s not something I walk around and think about,” the speaker told Fox News.

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