House Republican moves to make it harder to oust Speaker

October 31, 2023

Rep. Max Miller (R-OH) on Monday introduced a resolution to increase the number of Representatives needed to bring a motion to vacate the Speaker’s chair from the current one.

Reducing the number of lawmakers who can call for a motion to vacate—essentially a vote of no confidence against the Speaker—down to a single Representative was a concession Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) made with hardline conservatives to secure the Speaker’s gavel back in January. Before then, a motion to vacate required a majority vote from members of the Speaker’s party.

McCarthy’s concession backfired on him when hard-right Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) called for the motion on October 2, hours after he had accused McCarthy of having struck a “secret side deal” with President Biden and House Democrats to continue to fund Ukraine in its war against Russia.

The next day, the House ousted McCarthy by a vote of 216-210. It took another three more weeks before Republicans finally elected a new Speaker—Mike Johnson of Louisiana, the Republicans’ fourth nominee—while a government shutdown deadline to pass a federal budget in mid-November has been looming.

The resolution  that Rep. Miller introduced on Monday seeks to avoid a repeat of the past month by raising the threshold of lawmakers needed to force a no-confidence vote to at least 112 members from either the majority or the minority party.

“After being paralyzed for three weeks, one thing is crystal clear: We cannot be beholden to the whims and personal grudges of a handful of people. Americans want us to work hard to advance commonsense, conservative policies, not play petty politics,” Miller said in a statement. “Changing this rule is a simple step toward accomplishing that goal and keeping the House on track.”

Speaker Johnson and at least a few other House Republicans have so far expressed support for raising the threshold, though no formal vote has been scheduled yet.

PHOTO: Rep. Max Miller amid scramble to elect new Speaker, Oct 12

Read more exclusive news from Political IQ.



Get the featured stories in your email and don't miss out on important news.


SCOTUS Rules On Bump Stock Rule


SCOTUS Rules On Bump Stock Rule