House rejects Greene’s efforts to oust Speaker Johnson

Last Updated on May 13, 2024 8:45 AM CDT

The House overwhelmingly rejected a motion calling for Republican Speaker Mike Johnson’s ouster, rejecting an effort by one of the GOP leader’s most vocal critics, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. The 359-43 vote on a motion to table Greene’s measure required the help of Democrats, given the speaker’s narrow majority.

The vote could quiet the calls for Johnson’s removal among conservative hardliners, but the resounding rejection by Republicans and Democrats tired of the turmoil does not guarantee an end to the GOP chaos.

One of Donald Trump’s biggest supporters in Congress, Greene stood on the House floor late on Wednesday and read a long list of “transgressions” she said Johnson had committed as speaker. This included his passage of a $95 billion national security package with aid for Ukraine and to his reliance on Democrats to wield power. Colleagues booed in protest. But Greene soldiered on, criticizing Johnson’s leadership as “pathetic, weak and unacceptable.”

“As I’ve said from the beginning, and I’ve made clear here every day, I intend to do my job,” Johnson said afterward. “And I’ll let the chips fall where they may. In my view, that is leadership.”

Without Democratic help, Johnson would have faced a more dismal outcome. 11 Republicans voted to proceed with Greene’s effort, more than it took to oust then-Speaker Kevin McCarthy last fall, a first in U.S. history. But by relying on Democratic backing, Johnson risks inciting more criticism that he is insufficiently loyal to the party.

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