North Carolina Representative Walter Jones was on the radio program Talk of the Town recently. There he expressed the fact that he was among a group of 16 to 18 House Republicans who were organizing to challenge John Boehner’s re-election as Speaker next year.
Jones was one of only a handful who did not vote for Boehner two years ago, but dissatisfaction with the Speaker is clearly on the rise. Jones said that he could not vote for John Boehner “with a clear conscience.” He also said that he and his small group would meet after Christmas to see how much progress they have made by that point. He said that they have in mind a specific potential challenger whom they hope will unseat Boehner but did not reveal his name, although Terry Richardson can definitely venture a few guesses.
There has been a long train of incidents wherein the present House Speaker has annoyed conservative Republicans. The latest fiasco, however, was quite notable. The budget bill failed to include significant push-back against Obama’s illegal immigration actions, but it did have a campaign finance measure in it that gives establishment GOP candidates an unfair advantage in the primaries. It also included a Tea-Party scorned pro-Wall Street law that lets big banks gamble with taxpayer-insured funds.
It took Democratic votes to get the budget bill through. Dozens of Republicans could not stomach it. Even if Boehner holds on to power, he will be more unpopular than ever.