Johnson: Republicans ‘don’t have a functioning majority’ in the House

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Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) joined Jesse Watters Wednesday to discuss the massive foreign aid package that recently passed both chambers, and the difficulties Republicans have faced getting immigration-related reforms passed with a Democratic Senate and President Biden in office.

“Listen, we’re dealing with the smallest majority in U.S. history. We have a one-vote margin,” Johnson said on “Jesse Watters Primetime” on Wednesday. “Some people are upset that we didn’t have the border on the foreign aid bill. We fought all the way to the very end to do that. We’ve been fighting for the border every single day.”

Watters pushed back on the Speaker, saying Republican representatives are frustrated because while they hold a majority in the House, they aren’t getting what they want, which is increased border security measures.

“Well, that’s not true. We don’t have a functioning majority,” Johnson countered. “When you can only lose one vote, if one person has a different idea, we don’t.”

Johnson said Republicans don’t want to work together but wouldn’t specifically name Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), who has threatened to remove Johnson from his leadership position.

“We’re trying to keep the Republicans working together and we’ve gotten better policy, better process and we’re getting things done, but it’s very difficult when very individualistic, individual minded Republicans don’t want to move together as a block,” Johnson said.

Depending on who’s asked, the Republican caucus has very different answers about who is to blame for their dwindling majority. The pointed fingers highlight the deep divisions that hurt the House GOP, where conservatives are criticizing moderates and moderates are criticizing conservatives.

Johnson likened the situation to a game of football. He said some people want him to make a hail Mary pass “on every play,” which is not a “game-winning strategy.”

“Right now, when you have this margin, is three yards and a cloud of dust, right? We get the next first down, we put points on the board, and we get to November, and we take back and grow the majority.”

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