The Hill reports the encouraging news that House
Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is losing his grip on his caucus.
Sixteen Republicans defected Wednesday in a vote on the rule
governing consideration of a government-funding bill meant to
prevent a government shutdown. The defections could have caused the
rule to fail since most Democrats voted also voted against
Votes on rules are supposed to be party-line and serve as tests
of a caucus’s unity. So it was disconcerting for leaders to see so
many Republicans vote against the rule they had crafted….
Republicans were saved Wednesday by the fact that 17 Democrats
missed the vote, possibly because of the poor weather in Washington
that day. If those Democrats had all voted against the rule, it
would have been defeated….
The dissenters were being pushed from the right, and from
outside Congress itself:
Several conservatives switched their positions on the rule under
pressure from interest groups that on Wednesday morning announced
they intended to score votes on the rule.
Freedom Works, for example, was livid that GOP leaders refused
to allow a floor vote on an amendment to defund the implementation
of President Obama’s healthcare law.
The conservative group sent out an action alert to its members
on Wednesday under the heading “Demand Boehner Defund
Several of the seven lawmakers who supported passage of the bill
but opposed the rule vote cited the Obamacare exclusion in
explaining their votes.
Erick Erickson at RedState celebrated the
16, splitting them into a group of 10 he considers a reliable
“Conservative Fight Club” and 6 fellow travelers on this issue:
The ten members of the Conservative Fight Club are:
They are now the gold standard for conservatives in the
The other congressmen who stood with the Fight Club are:
Three of Erickson’s “conservative fight club”–Amash, Massie,
and Yoho–are interviewed at length in my
March ;Reason magazine feature “Congress
After Ron Paul.”
Even Ron Paul told me in some interviews for my book Ron
Paul’s Revolution: The Man and the Movement He
Inspired ;that he tended to blunt his ideological
opposition by mostly being a good party man on procedural
the importance of resisting ;the continuing resolution from
This CR is the best, and perhaps last, chance that Congress will
have for making major reforms in spending for the foreseeable
future. Yet the House plans to just pass the CR at current spending
levels, and is even using a closed rule to limit debate and prevent
any amendments from being offered that might reform spending in the
bill. Even in the absence of a budget, Congress must attempt to
return to some semblance of regular order, where spending bills are
allowed to be debated and amended by members on the floor.
FreedomWorks also notes the 14 Republicans who voted against,
not just the rule regarding the continuing resolution (to keep
government spending going), but against the resolution
Amash, Bridenstine, Broun, DeSantis, DesJarlais, Duncan (TN),
Gingrey, Gohmert, Kingston, Massie, McClintock, Posey, Salmon,
Note the presence of both Amash and Massie among the nays.