“If conservatives want to keep the House and win the Senate, we need to fire John Boehner as speaker of the House,” Ned Ryun wrote. “We only need 16 House votes to do it.”
There will be 233 Republican House members in the next Congress, against 194 Democrats. Assuming the vote for Speaker breaks along party lines, Boehner would need 218 votes for reelection. If 16 Republicans were to abstain, Boehner would get only 217 votes, and the process would continue until someone hit 218.
“Once we depose Boehner and cause a firestorm, the Republican caucus will get the memo: Pick someone else,” Ryun continued. “These 16 Republicans only need to hold out until the caucus chooses a new leader.”
Red State has been one of the most vocal opponents to Republican leadership’s decision to strip four members - Reps. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Walter Jones (R-N.C.) and David Schweikert (R-Ariz.), Tim Huelskamp (R-Kan.) – of high-profile committee assignments.
Ryun cited this as the primary reason to oust Boehner.
“Boehner and the House GOP Steering Committee decided to purge four conservative House members from their committee,” he wrote. “If Speaker Boehner wants to purge independent, bold conservatives—I think it’s time he gets fired as Speaker.”
Huelskamp on Wednesday called leadership’s moves “punishment” for not toeing the party line, and said Boehner warned the caucus that the leaders are "watching" how the rank-and-file vote to determine committee assignments.
One source disputed this notion to The Hill.
"The committee's decision had nothing to do with ideology,” the source said. “For those suggesting otherwise, I'd respectfully suggest that you look at some of the people the Steering Committee put in charge of committees. I'd also suggest you look at some of the members who were added to the committees by the Steering Committee. If you do that and come away with the conclusion that there was a 'conservative purge,' I'd be interested hearing the rationale."
Huelskamp also said Boehner threatened to pull more members off committees, which the source also disputed, saying Boehner told the caucus he “hopes never to have to do again.”
The floor vote for Speaker will take place in January.
The Hill asked Huelskamp on Wednesday if he would vote to reelect Boehner, and he insinuated that he might abstain.
“The Fiesta Bowl with K-State is the same day,” he responded.