Johnson Says He Will Not Defund Special Counsel Jack Smith

 May 10, 2024

This week, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) floored her motion to vacate against Johnson.

The motion was defeated with the help of Democrats, and we may have just found out why.

Talking Points…
- Motion to vacate fails against Johnson
- Apparent deal with Democrats
- Analysis

Greene’s Motion to Vacate Fails

Greene was repeatedly warned that her motion to vacate would fail against Speaker Johnson (R-LA). When Democrats came out to support Johnson, that should have been the end of it, but Greene wanted to make a point.

Actually, what she wanted to do was get everyone on the record so she could go after them down the road. She surely also figured this would help her out with MAGA voters, even though Donald Trump has defended Johnson and publicly asked Greene to back off the motion to vacate.

When all was said and done, the motion was tabled with a vote of 359-43, with only a handful of Republicans and a few dozen Democrats voting in favor of the motion. The second the vote failed, Greene and Rep. Massie (R-KY), who had backed the motion, started to wonder what kind of deals had been made behind the scenes to protect Johnson.

Was There a Deal Made

After the motion failed, Johnson was immediately questioned about whether he would back the movement among MAGA congressional members to defend Jack Smith, the special counsel in two of Donald Trump’s cases. Now, I have already stated that this is a fool’s errand because it will never get through the Senate, let alone having Biden sign it, so it is just a waste of time in terms of passing something that will actually become law.

When Johnson was asked about it, he took a different path in denying moving such legislation forward, stating:

“That’s not something you wave a wand and just eliminate the special counsel as a provision.

“There is a necessity for a function like that, because sometimes the Department of Justice — which is an executive branch agency — can’t necessarily, without a conflict of interest, investigate or prosecute the president who’s their boss, or the president’s family.”

Greene immediately attacked Johnson on X for his answer, as she now appears ready to paint him as a traitor to the party and to Donald Trump. She is clearly trying to get Trump back on her side to have Johnson removed because Trump has not only supported defunding Smith but also specifically asked congressional members for help ending these federal cases against him.


I was never really a fan of Johnson before, and have obviously not been a fan from what I have seen from him as Speaker thus far. Having said that, I have also stated that he does not have as much power in the House right now as people like Greene think. With a one-vote margin and a divided House caucus, what can he really do?

With that in mind, he could have approached this situation far differently to possibly win over Greene for his stance or at least make her look foolish, considering the current state of affairs. For instance, Johnson could have stated that they were running out of time in this term, and since that legislation would have no chance of passing the Senate and being signed, he would have preferred for members to concentrate on presenting legislation that would help the American people and be signed when it hits Biden’s desk.

He could have put Greene on the defensive, but all he did was feed her narrative and give the impression that he made a backroom deal with Democrats to stay in power. One thing is for certain: Johnson cannot lead this caucus if the GOP somehow manages to keep this majority in 2025.

About Jerry McConway

Jerry McConway is an independent political author and investigator who lives in Dallas, Texas. He has spent years building a strong following of readers who know that he will write what he believes is true, even if it means criticizing politicians his followers support. His readers have come to expect his integrity.

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