Sunday, April 21, 2024
Share:

The Vanishing of the House GOP Majority



With a failed President and the future of the country in jeopardy, the Republican Party should be united and focused on one objective, victory in November. Unfortunately, instead of uniting behind the platform of the party and heeding the wishes of grassroots Republicans, the GOP is amid turmoil again.

After the 2022 midterm election, the Republican Party regained control of the House of Representatives for the first time in four years. While the party only enjoyed a slim 222-213 majority over the Democrats, it was enough to direct legislative agendas and the investigations of House committees.

Sadly, that House majority has been dwindling ever since the Republican Party gained power. It seems that some House Republicans are intent on losing their majority and giving complete control of Congress to the Democrats.

For example, it was utterly foolish for the Republicans to relinquish a House seat and expel Congressman George Santos (R-NY) after he was indicted for conspiracy, credit card fraud, wire fraud and other charges. Of course, Santos may be a horrible criminal and liar, but he has not been convicted. Every person deserves a chance to mount a defense, state their case and refute the charges.

Santos should have been given an opportunity to challenge the charges in court. If he was to be expelled it should have been by his voters, if that was their desire, in the next election. Instead, after he was removed, his congressional seat was filled by a Democrat who won the special election.

Regarding Democrats, they would never have expelled Santos if he was a member of their party. Thus, it is no surprise that Democrats have not expelled U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), who has been charged with wire fraud, extortion, and bribery among other charges. No wonder so many people refer to the GOP as “The Stupid Party.”

Along with booting Santos, five Republican members of Congress announced their retirement early in this term, but only one representative had a legitimate reason. Congressman Chris Stewart (R-UT) resigned to tend to his “wife’s health concerns.” Of course, taking care of an ill spouse always takes precedence over a political position, so Stewart had his priorities in the right order. Fortunately, his seat was filled by another Republican, Congresswoman Celeste Maloy(R-UT).

None of the other four Republicans who quit their positions early had a compelling reason. Representative Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) resigned because he was angry about losing his House Speaker position. Upon leaving, he said he wanted to “serve America in new ways;” but it was an abdication of his responsibilities to his constituents, and it resulted in the scheduling of a special election on May 21.

Representative Bill Johnson (R-OH) left his congressional seat to take a position as President of Youngstown State University. He should have declined the position or told the university that he would be unavailable until after his term ended. His departure will force another special election to be held on June 11.

Congressman Ken Buck (R-CO) announced his resignation earlier this month. It was effective on Friday. He gave no justifiable reason for leaving other than his frustration with his colleagues. Buck said the last year was “the worst” of his career. He said he planned to take another job “I want to go do.” Yet, he quit the job he already had, forcing a June 25 special election.

The latest resignation occurred last week when Congressman Mike Gallagher (R-WI) announced his intention to vacate his seat. He said he was “proud” of his work in Congress but gave no reason for his resignation.

He intends to officially resign on April 19, after the deadline for a special election. According to Wisconsin law, if the resignation would have occurred prior to 2nd Tuesday in April (9th), there would have been a special election scheduled.

Instead, by making his resignation effective April 19, Gallagher will prevent a special election for his district, thereby giving his constituents no representation for the remainder of the year.

His decision outraged Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA). She called it “intentional, purposeful, and puts our entire majority at risk.” Greene believes he should be “expelled” early so a special election can be held in Wisconsin.

Once Gallagher officially leaves, the House Republican majority will shrink to a tiny 217-213 margin. Currently, there are five House vacancies, but only four special elections scheduled since Gallagher’s seat will remain vacant. If Democrats win the four special elections, there will be a tie in Congress, with both parties controlling 217 seats.

While Democrats support destructive policies that are extremely harmful to the nation, their congressional members do not self-destruct like their GOP colleagues. Why are these Republican members quitting?

Some moderate members are still upset at the removal of House Speaker McCarthy. Others may want to cause problems for President Trump. In fact, 21 House Republican members have announced their intention to leave at the end of their current term. For many of them, good riddance, but at least they have committed to finishing their term.

The rumor is that several more House Republicans will announce their decision to leave Congress before the end of their term. If this happens, it will practically ensure that Democrats take control of the House of Representatives before the fall election.

There should be a requirement that every member of Congress who leaves office early, without a legitimate reason involving their health or family, be forced to pay for the costs of a special election. This will encourage representatives to finish their term. Quitting in Congress is unacceptable on a variety of levels, but, most importantly, it is a betrayal to constituents who supported the representative.

Whether it is hatred of House conservatives or President Trump, decisions to quit are unjustified and should be condemned by all Republicans. The stakes are too high for our country to allow personal grievances to give control to Democrats, who have been so destructive to America. 

Jeff Crouere is a native New Orleanian and his award-winning program, “Ringside Politics,” airs Saturdays from Noon until 1 p.m. CT nationally on Real America’s Voice TV Network AmericasVoice.News and weekdays from 7-11 a.m. CT on WGSO 990-AMWgso.com. He is a political columnist, the author of America’s Last Chance and provides regular commentaries on the Jeff Crouere YouTube channel and on Crouere.net. For more information, email him at [email protected].