Boehner losing ground in bid to keep post

By Garth Kant

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio

WASHINGTON – Opposition to re-electing House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, was growing just minutes before the crucial vote on Tuesday, as Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa,  described to WND an “ever-intensifying effort to organize opposition for the floor vote.”

The latest head-count showed House Republicans were within 13 votes of making the first step toward dethroning the speaker by forcing a second ballot after the vote scheduled for 12:40, which will be live-streamed on CSPAN.

King told WND he believed there were now 14 or 15 members prepared to vote against Boehner and he turned out to be correct.

The 15 lawmakers who have announced their opposition to Boehner  are:

  • Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas
  • Rep. Ted Yoho, Fla.
  • Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa
  • Rep. Justin Amash, R-Mich.
  • Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C.
  • Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kans.
  • Rep. Randy Weber, R-Texas
  • Rep. Curtis Clawson, R-Fla.
  • Rep. Jim Bridenstine, R-Okla.
  • Rep. Dave Brat, R-Va.
  • Rep. Walter Jones, N.C.
  • Rep. Gary Palmer, R-Ala.
  • Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky.
  • Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz.
  • Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind.

And the following GOP House members said prior to the 2014 election that they would vote against Boehner:

  • Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga.
  • Rep. John Ratcliffe, R-Texas
  • Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga.

Only 28 opposition votes are now needed to force a second ballot, following the resignation of Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y., after pleading guilty to tax-evasion.

The effort by GOP House members to oust Boehner is gaining momentum, but most of the action on Capitol Hill has been obscured from view, with the cajoling and arm-twisting for votes taking place behind closed doors.

Even many of the most conservative Republicans who would be the most likely to vote against Boehner are playing it close to the vest, because, if the speaker survives the coup, he could retaliate by stripping lawmakers of prized committee assignments and chairmanships.

Members have to make a monumental decision, and they have to make it fast: The vote for House Speaker is Tuesday, and Boehner’s two challengers announced their candidacies just over the weekend, Reps. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, and Ted Yoho, R-Fla. Rep. Daniel Webster, Fla., was expected to announce his candidacy.

WND’s Joseph Farah has begun the grass-roots “Don’t Be Yellow: Dump Boehner Now!” campaign, which has already sent some 560,000 letters to House Republicans attempting to mobilize the palace coup.

But it looks like the voters have their back. WND’s “Dump Boerhner” campaign has generated more than 500,000 letters urging House members to fire the speaker. And a recent poll found 60-percent of Republican voters want a new speaker.

WND has contacted 65 Republican House members, including the most conservative lawmakers, to ask who they would vote for, and why, but it appears most are waiting to see how much traction the Boehner mutiny gains before casting their lots.

For instance, a spokesman for staunch conservative Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., told WND, “He’s keeping his options open.”

But the response from another strong conservative, Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., indicated the anti-Boehner sentiment is there, while conservatives are still sorting out which challenger to back.

Gosar’s spokesperson told WND the congressman “is still considering the available options, but he is supportive of the alternatives to Speaker Boehner including Reps. Gohmert and Yoho.”

The challengers’ hope is, were it to go to a second ballot, more GOP lawmakers might be emboldened to join the revolt against the speaker, after sensing a genuine chance for a coup.


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