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MTG Triggers the Motion to Vacate

State of the Union: The House has two days to vote on Speaker Johnson’s future.


Congress Considers Spending Bill To Avert Government Shutdown

The clock has started for the House to hold a vote to vacate House Speaker Mike Johnson.

Wednesday evening, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) asked for privilege on her previously filed motion to vacate the speaker. Johnson and House GOP leadership has two days to hold a vote on it. 

Greene, backed by Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) and potentially other hardline members of the GOP caucus, will have an uphill battle in ousting the speaker; Democrats have already claimed they will save the speaker to avoid a repetition of last October’s chaos. Whether or not Democrats actually make good on the promise, however, remains to be seen. The possibility of the House GOP entering crisis mode for the second time in less than eight months in an election year might be too good for Democrats to pass up.

In the last few days, Greene and Johnson have kept meeting to try to come to an agreement in which Greene would back off her motion in exchange for some political concessions. Greene reportedly asked for no further funding for Ukraine, no further funding foir special counsels investigating former President Donald Trump, the reinstatement of the Hastert rule (not scheduling votes that do not have majority support of the majority party), and the enforcement of the Massie rule (across-the-board spending cuts as a default position) in further appropriations negotiations. Johnson apparently refused to grant these concessions, leading Greene to trigger the motion.

It’s a risky play from Greene. If the motion fails, Greene will have no leverage to get her concessions—concessions this magazine would like to see the speaker provide. And chances are it will fail in the coming hours or days.