Ryan urges GOP unity after farm bill failure, discharge petition

Ryan urges GOP unity after farm bill failure, discharge petition
© Getty Images

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanDems see Kavanaugh saga as playing to their advantage How does the 25th Amendment work? Sinema, Fitzpatrick call for long-term extension of Violence Against Women Act MORE (R-Wis.) on Tuesday urged unity among House Republicans following last week’s failed farm bill vote and an insurgent effort by centrist Republicans to force immigration votes.

During a GOP conference meeting, Ryan highlighted some of the party’s accomplishments and told members that it’s critical to come together as a team.

ADVERTISEMENT

“He said we need to start acting like we’re in charge of the place, and being divided doesn’t help,” said Rep. Mark AmodeiMark Eugene AmodeiRevitalize our defense industrial base with mine permitting reform To reduce China's leverage, rebuild America's minerals supply chain GOP staves off immigration revolt — for now MORE (R-Nev.).

“His message was unity. 'Let's do business. Let's do what we’re up here to do,'” added Rep. Roger WilliamsJohn (Roger) Roger WilliamsDems gain momentum 50 days before midterms GOP: The economy will shield us from blue wave Republicans have spent .5 million at Trump properties since he took office: report MORE (R-Texas.).

Following his remarks, everyone stood up and applauded, according to a person inside the room.

But Ryan also expressed frustration that conservatives tanked the GOP farm bill on Friday and that some moderates are trying to use a discharge petition to circumvent leadership and set up a series of floor votes on immigration.

“He was frustrated … I think he used the word 'crap' once. For Paul Ryan, 'crap' is pretty blue language,” Amodei said. 

Ryan told reporters after the meeting that the farm bill flap was “regrettable,” but argued that legislation sometimes fails — including the previous farm bill.

GOP leaders also promised members that they would hold a series of immigration votes during the third week of June, though the details of the process are still being worked out.

Despite the commitment from leadership, Rep. Jeff DenhamJeffrey (Jeff) John DenhamTrump attacks Dems on farm bill House Republicans push for vote on Violence Against Women Act Steyer group launching 0,000 digital ad campaign targeting millennials MORE (R-Calif.) said Tuesday that more Republicans will soon be signing on to the discharge petition.

“We’re adding more today,” Denham told reporters after the conference meeting. “We’re continuing to roll out more Republicans this week.”

Ryan was supposed to stay in Wisconsin for his son’s graduation from junior high on Tuesday night, but he flew back to D.C. because the Speaker felt it was so important to address the conference after the failed farm bill vote, according to Rep. Joe BartonJoe Linus BartonConservatives blame McCarthy for Twitter getting before favorable committee Worst-case scenario for House GOP is 70-seat wipeout Latina Leaders to Watch 2018 MORE (R-Texas).

--Updated at 1:02 p.m.