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Boehner’s Blunder: Meadows Moves to Retire the Speaker

The Republican majority in Congress was supposed to bring bold change.We were promised principled priorities and a pro-freedom agenda. We were promised a stop to the progressive agenda of Barack Obama. We were promised lower taxes, less government, more freedom.

But, in spite of Republican victories in 2014, business as usual has continued in Washington. One of the main reasons for this is a decided lack of leadership in the House of Representatives. Speaker Boehner has been a continuous obstacle to meaningful reform, as well as displaying a nasty tendency to abuse the power of his position.

That’s why Rep. Mark Meadows has introduced a resolution that, if passed, would retire Boehner as Speaker, leaving his chair vacant. It’s an incredibly gutsy move. Boehner is well known for taking vengeance on those who oppose him. But there comes a time when men of principle can no longer stand by and tolerate injustice, whatever the consequences. It helps that there is also a real chance that this plan could succeed.

Meadows can move to hold a floor vote to vacate the Speaker's chair, a motion which the House must comply with within 48 hours.The upshot is that if Meadows can peel off 29 Republicans, Boehner would need Democrats to support him, which would put him in an extremely embarrassing position. It will be remembered that 25 Republicans voted against Boehner in the Speaker fight at the beginning of the year, so reaching 29 is not an unreasonable number. And even if the measure fails, Boehner will still look bad and will be less likely to run for Speaker at the start of the next Congress. After this vote, the Speaker's chair will be vacant, and the House will have to hold a second vote to elect a new Speaker.

Under Boehner, the House has permitted tax increases, spending increases, and debt ceiling increases, with virtually nothing in the way of reform to show for it. Boehner memorably stripped Meadows of his committee position after the congressman voted against a trade rule, only reinstating him after a public outcry. Boehner earlier did the same thing to some of the Members who opposed him in the Speaker vote.

If the Republican majority is going to accomplish anything of substance, it is not going to happen under Boehner. It’s time for new leadership, and the fact that Meadows is willing to push for it at personal risk to his committee assignments and fundraising ability is admirable in the extreme. Please call your representative and tell them it’s time to retire Boehner. If we want to bring liberty back to our republic, we have to do a lot better.

The text of the resolution is below:

Meadows Speaker Resolution