Republican rule in Washington, D.C. hasn’t differed much from Democratic rule in recent decades. Whether it was under Donald Trump or George W. Bush (or Mitch McConnell or John Boehner), GOP governance failed to provide much of a contrast to Democratic governance. Congressional majorities/ presidential administrations of both parties supported reckless spending and entitlement expansions, socialized medicine, unsustainable debt accumulation, crony capitalism, fiat money-printing, neoconservative warmongering, rampant corruption and woke virtue-signaling.
One side (the GOP) pays lip service to free markets, lower taxes, less government and more liberty … it just never delivers on any of those promises once it is holding the reins of power.
There is a difference in the parties, though. When Democrats hold power, they tend to operate – and implement – with ruthless efficiency. As a unit. Republicans? They run government like a proverbial clown car. And as new hyper-partisan rules of engagement overtake Washington, D.C., that clown car is suddenly careening off a cliff.
We were treated to a prelude of the coming dysfunction back in January when Republicans struggled to nominate California centrist Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. McCarthy eventually got the gig, but was forced out earlier this month for failing to keep his word to conservative hardliners in the GOP caucus.
McCarthy’s ouster has thrown the GOP majority into disarray … basically turning what was already an unruly rodeo of goats (one of my favorite dysfunction descriptors) into a full-on crazed goat stampede.
House majority leader Steve Scalise of Louisiana was thought to be McCarthy’s successor, but he dropped out of the race on Thursday evening after more than a dozen GOP lawmakers – including South Carolina’s Nancy Mace – refused to support him.
Mace has become something of a lightning rod in the GOP caucus following her surprising vote to oust McCarthy – drawing the ire of the establishment class.
Ordinarily, it takes 218 votes to become speaker. Given that there are two vacancies in the House at the moment, however, the magic number to claim the gavel is 217.
Can any Republican get there?
“I have filed to be Speaker of the House,” Scott wrote on Friday afternoon. “We are in Washington to legislate, and I want to lead a House that functions in the best interest of the American people.”
As Jordan and Scott compete for votes, congressman Tom McClintock of California attempted to renominate McCarthy – a move the former speaker shot down as “unproductive.”
With all 212 Democratic members of the chamber expected to vote against any GOP candidate, it only takes five Republican members to block a nomination. Once again, it would appear, Democrats are a unified monolith and Republicans are … well, not.
One final note of interest? While each of the 55 politicians to previously hold this office have been members of the House, there is no explicitly stated membership requirement contained within Article I, Section II, Clause 5 of the U.S. Constitution. In other words, anyone could be chosen by the House to fill the vacancy.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR …
Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven (soon to be eight) children.
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