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Republican House Leadership Nixes Majority Of Freedom Caucus Amendments

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


The Republicans have taken back the House but the arguing among factions of the party has continued.

The House Freedom Caucus, the more conservative wing of the Party, has proposed eight rule changes and the Republican House leadership has said no to six of them, Just The News reported.

The amendments that failed included a requirement that spending bills must pass before the fiscal year officially begins on Oct. 1. If not, other legislation would not be able to be considered on the floor. An amendment that would ensure all members of the Republican Conference are able to participate in conference meetings was rejected, and a rule change to allow one member, with the support of 25 others, to request having one Republican staffer admitted to conference meetings also failed.

In addition, House GOP leadership rejected an amendment that would have allowed committee members to elect their own chairmen. 

The two amendments that passed were related to prohibiting steering committee members, except elected leadership, from serving on the executive committee of the National Republican Congressional Committee, and reopening House grounds to the public again after access was limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.

There are rumored to be more changes proposed by the House Freedom caucus that are to be considered after the lawmakers come back from break.

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One of the amendments that has not been decided is the Holman Rule which allows for the salaries of federal employees who are not cooperating with existing law to be stripped.

“Democrats eliminated the ‘Holman Rule’ when they took the House because it allows members to make targeted spending cuts in appropriations funding bills by slashing the funding of specific federal programs or cutting the salaries of individual federal employees (e.g., Dr. Anthony Fauci),” an official House Freedom Caucus summary said.

Republican Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene suggested using the rule to not pay Special Counsel jack Smith who is investigating former President Donald Trump.

“Holman Rule. Look it up! @GOPLeader is going to put it in place. That means no money for Garland’s politically weaponized Special Counsel. Don’t promise too many jobs! Whoops defunded,” she said.

It is a tough situation for House Minority Leader and California Rep. Kevin McCarthy who wants to be Speaker but with a razor thin majority cannot afford have too many voters abandon him.

McCarthy is facing extreme headwinds from Republicans who are not guaranteeing him anything as the final outcomes of many House races were still pending on Friday morning. s far as the speakership goes, not everyone shares McCarthy’s opinion that he should get the gavel.

A scathing report from Politico Playbook detailed how McCarthy is struggling to gain enough support to become voted as the speaker.

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Politico reported:

McCARTHY’S LAST HURDLE — When JOHN BOEHNER suddenly retired in 2015, members of the House Freedom Caucus showed up at speaker-in-waiting KEVIN McCARTHY’s office with a list of demands: In exchange for their support, they wanted McCarthy to name one of their own to a senior leadership position and embrace rules changes that empowered conservatives.

If he refused, they told him, they would band together to block him from securing the needed 218 votes to be speaker. But McCarthy was unwilling to subjugate his power in order to appease a splinter faction, and ultimately, the California Republican dropped his bid for his dream job, paving the way for PAUL RYAN’s rise.

Since then, McCarthy has cannily maneuvered to ensure he never finds himself in a similar predicament. He’s befriended many of the conservatives he once scorned, made an ally out of his previous archrival, Freedom Caucus founder JIM JORDAN (R-Ohio), and become a close confidant of DONALD TRUMP. Yet seven years later, McCarthy once again finds his dream held hostage by the same group of hardliners. Thanks to the GOP’s lackluster midterm performance, he is seeking to preside over what appears likely to be an extremely thin majority — a scenario that hands massive leverage to the far right.

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Pennsylvania Republican Rep. Scott Perry told Politico that they sent a list of demands to McCarthy but that he has not responded yet.

“We know there are a number of members who feel as we do, that Kevin McCarthy has not earned the right to lead, has not earned our vote. The rules of the game should be known before we select a captain,” Perry said. “We don’t know what the majority is or who is in the majority. … It seems appropriate that we have a family conversation prior to voting.”

“If he bends the knee on the motion to vacate, the speakership is screwed,” one former House leadership staffer who was close with McCarthy told Playbook. “What the fuck is the point in being speaker if they put it back? They own you. They’ll wield that anytime they want to push you around. … And if that’s the price, it’s not worth it.”

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