Hakeem Jeffries says House Democrats will block effort to oust Mike Johnson

House Democratic leaders announced Tuesday that they will vote to thwart any effort from Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene to oust House Speaker Mike Johnson from his post, saying the “time has come to turn the page on this chapter of pro-Putin Republican obstruction.”

Greene, a far-right Republican from Georgia, has been threatening to begin a procedure to oust Johnson from the speakership. Greene this week said Johnson’s days as speaker are “numbered.” 

“We will vote to table Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s Motion to Vacate the Chair,” House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries, Democratic Whip Katherine Clark and Democratic Caucus Chair Pete Aguilar said in a statement Tuesday after their House Democratic caucus meeting. “If she invokes the motion, it will not succeed.”

In response, Greene posted on social media on Tuesday morning that “Mike Johnson is officially the Democrat Speaker of the House. Here is their official endorsement of his speakership.”

Medal of Honor Recipient
House Minority Leader Hakeen Jeffries, D-N.Y., and House Speaker Mike Johnson of La., talk during a ceremony as retired Army Col. Ralph Puckett, the last surviving Medal of Honor recipient for acts performed during the Korean War, lies in honor in the Rotunda at the U.S. Capitol Monday, April 29, 2024, in Washington. Puckett died on April 8, at his home in Columbus, Ga., at the age of 97.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

“What slimy back room deal did Johnson make for the Democrats’ support?” Green said.   

Johnson became speaker in October after Republicans ousted former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy using the same procedure that Greene has threatened to use against Johnson. Republicans have a razor-thin majority in the House, and can only afford to lose a handful of votes. 

Tabling a motion means postponing or suspending consideration of that motion indefinitely, while a motion to vacate the chair is a procedure that can be used in the House through a single member to begin votes to remove the speaker. 

Greene faults Johnson for his work in securing foreign aid bills benefitting Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, and for working with Democrats earlier this year to secure a $1.2 trillion spending bill to avoid a government shutdown. 

“For months, House Republicans irresponsibly delayed critical security assistance to our democratic allies in Ukraine, Israel and the Indo-Pacific, while simultaneously blocking humanitarian assistance to civilians in harm’s way in places like Gaza, Haiti and the Sudan,” the House Democratic leaders said in their statement. “Thanks to a bipartisan coalition of Democrats and Republicans, led by President Biden, we were finally able to meet the national security needs of the American people.”

“From the very beginning of this Congress, House Democrats have put people over politics and found bipartisan common ground with traditional Republicans in order to deliver real results,” they continued. “At the same time, House Democrats have aggressively pushed back against MAGA extremism. We will continue to do just that.”

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