Newly-elected House Speaker Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA) said he ‘isn’t afraid’ to change the ‘motion to vacate’ rule that led to Kevin McCarthy’s ouster, The Hill claimed.
After Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) called for a motion to vacate McCarthy, all Democrats and eight Republicans voted to remove the California Republican as House Speaker.
Johnson received the gavel after three weeks of House chaos without a Speaker.
Will the Louisiana Republican take steps to ensure that cannot happen again?
From The Hill:
“Everyone’s here in good faith … and everyone has told me that that rule has to change. Look, I’m not afraid of it because I’m going to openly work transparently and work with every member and everyone will be … will fully understand what we’re doing and why,” Johnson said Sunday on Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures.” “And I think that’s a big part of it. But the rule makes it difficult for any Speaker to do their job.”
As part of the dramatic, 15-ballot election that handed McCarthy the gavel in January, the former Speaker agreed to lower the threshold to force a vote on a motion to vacate from five to one — which allowed Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) to single-handedly call for the vote earlier this month.
Republicans furious at the mutiny want to make sure that can’t happen again.
Noting changing the rule isn’t his “top priority,” Johnson said, “My highest priority is to get this work done and to do it an open and transparent way [to], as I said in my speech, the night when I took the oath, to decentralize the power from the Speaker’s office.”
“I really want to empower our chairman and the committees of jurisdiction, and all the talented people in the House and make them more of a part of the big decisions and the situations and the processes here and ensure regular order,” Johnson said. “If we do that, we don’t have to worry about a motion to vacate, and I’m doing that, working on that every day.”
According to Fox News, several Republicans do not support changing the motion to vacate rule.
Per Fox News:
Newly-minted Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., hinted that the House may change the motion to vacate rule but several of his Republican colleagues aren’t behind the idea.
Johnson mentioned to Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Thursday night that he thinks the House is “going to change” the one-member threshhold to introduce a motion to vacate — the parliamentary mechanism that brought about ex-Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s ouster.
But at least two of Johnson’s House Republican colleagues resist the idea of changing the rule.
Indiana Republican Rep. Jim Banks, who is running for Senate, told Fox News Digital that the House GOP is behind Johnson, but there’s no reason to change the threshhold.
“The House Republican conference trusts Mike Johnson and that’s why he received unanimous support on the House Floor,” Banks said.
“I don’t see any reason for him to change the rule,” he continued.
Georgia Republican Rep. Austin Scott — who ran twice for House speaker amid the caucus’ gavel fight — told Fox News Digital that he hoped his colleagues learned a lesson from the eventful past few weeks so a rule change “wouldn’t be necessary.”
Watch Mike Johnson’s full interview on “Sunday Morning Futures” below: