John Boehner Can’t Find Votes to Keep Him as Speaker: Let the Crying Begin

It’s going to be a looooooong hot summer and the entire House Republican caucus is going to be feeling the heat. Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) has introduced a motion that would remove John Boehner from his cherished Speakership of the House and it looks like Boehner has a fight on his hands.

The motion was introduced last week and reportedly caught the entire House by surprise, especially Speaker Boehner. Boehner has been at war with the conservative members of the House since 2010 when their votes made him Speaker.

Boehner and the Republican leadership have made promise after promise to House conservatives – and the Republican base who’ve given them their majority. And they’ve broken every one of them. They’ve pulled conservatives off their committee assignments as punishment for fighting for conservative principles. Rep. Meadows appears to have had enough and he’s not taking it anymore.

Boehner has been challenged before and he’s always survived by comfortable margins because the Members are afraid of him. As the old saying goes, if you’re planning on killing the king you’d better kill the king. It’s looking like Boehner may have more of a problem this time.

House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) had been planning to call up on the House floor last week a measure from Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) that would have removed him as Speaker of the House if it succeeded—intending to embarrass Meadows—but abandoned the plan after his entire leadership structure learned that they did not have the votes to re-elect him as Speaker before the August recess.

It’s not know how many Representatives were called by the leadership, they aren’t responding to questions and the members aren’t talking for the record. But there’s obviously trouble in Boehner’s version of Paradise.

The August recess is upon us, Congress is shutting down for a month (YAY!) and you can bet if the phone companies still had long distance charges they’d be getting rich.

There are 25 members who voted for a Republican alternative at the beginning of this Congress, and now there are plenty more who are disaffected with the tactics of Boehner and his allies in leadership. More members, those who want to replace Boehner suspect, will, over the course of the month of August, come out publicly against Boehner at town hall events and in interviews with media. …
When the August recess is over, if Meadows wants to—or any other member wants to—they could offer the motion to vacate the chair and remove Boehner as Speaker of the House as a privileged resolution, which means it gets a floor vote in full without the consent of Boehner’s leadership team. That means the Speaker is extraordinarily vulnerable, and his conservative opposition could make a move whenever, wherever they want to—and when they have the votes to remove him from office.

There is one real twist here. Democrats.


Assuming Boehner is removed as Speaker after the August recess there will be another vote for Speaker. It requires 218 votes to be elected Speaker of the House, no Republicans will vote for Nancy Pelosi or any other Democrat so “a” Republican will be Speaker. Therein lies the problem.

Democrats consider Boehner more or less as “one of their own.” He may not be a card carrying Democrat, but he’s an establishment politician who will work with Democrats on their agenda. We’ve watched that since 2010.

If Republicans nominate a conservative for the Speaker’s job and Boehner is also nominated it’s not a stretch to assume Democrats – at least enough of them to give Boehner 218 votes – will vote for Boehner.

If that happens, all hell breaks loose. It looks to be an interesting rest-of-the-year.


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