Protecting John Boehner’s Speakership

There has been chatter the past week about a potential move by House Republicans to unseat Speaker John Boehner.

I’ve laughed at this chatter, because it simply isn’t going to happen. I’ve laughed at Republicans who think that Ted Yoho or Louie Gohmert could become the next Speaker. I’ve laughed at Democrats who think that Nancy Pelosi could become Speaker. I’ve laughed — because I’ve looked into the process to unseat and replace a Speaker, I’ve looked at the process of electing a Speaker, and it’s simply not going to happen.

First, let me deal with the Democratic chatter about Pelosi. “If the Republicans split their votes and the Democrats stick together, then Pelosi could win.” No, the Speakership vote doesn’t work that way. To be elected Speaker, you have to win 50% plus 1 of the House membership. Pelosi would need about forty Republicans to vote for her, and the way that Fox News has demonized Pelosi, any Republican who voted for a Pelosi speakership would have multiple primary challengers enter the 2016 race within fifteen minutes.

Now, for the Republican chatter about Yoho or Gohmert. Again, the same thing — they would have to get 50% plus 1 of the House membership. I don’t see either of these clowns getting 218 Republican votes. They certainly aren’t going to get Democratic votes for the Speakership; Democrats recognize that a Tea Party-run House wouldn’t function and would be actively dangerous. For example, a debt ceiling increase needs to be approved within the next week; could anyone trust Yoho or Gohmert to move such a bill to the floor of the House? I certainly don’t.

Now, we have Democrats speaking, on the record, that they will support Boehner if there’s a move to unseat him. I think this is a calculated move to tell Republicans who want to unseat Boehner that it’s not going to happen. I think it’s also a move to reassure Boehner that he can move necessary legislation, like the debt ceiling increase, without worrying about a revolt on his right flank.

If a faction of Republicans tries to unseat Boehner in the next few weeks, it will be amusing but ultimately futile.

Published by Allyn

A writer, editor, journalist, sometimes coder, occasional historian, and all-around scholar, Allyn Gibson is the writer for Diamond Comic Distributors' monthly PREVIEWS catalog, used by comic book shops and throughout the comics industry, and the editor for its monthly order forms. In his over ten years in the industry, Allyn has interviewed comics creators and pop culture celebrities, covered conventions, analyzed industry revenue trends, and written copy for comics, toys, and other pop culture merchandise. Allyn is also known for his short fiction (including the Star Trek story "Make-Believe,"the Doctor Who short story "The Spindle of Necessity," and the ReDeus story "The Ginger Kid"). Allyn has been blogging regularly with WordPress since 2004.