Intense Feuds Erupt Among Lawmakers in 118th US Congress

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene led an effort to oust House Speaker Mike Johnson, but her motion was blocked in a 359-43-7 vote. The infighting among lawmakers has hindered the passage of crucial legislation and eroded trust in the political system.

Aqsa Younas Rana
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Intense Feuds Erupt Among Lawmakers in 118th US Congress

Intense Feuds Erupt Among Lawmakers in 118th US Congress

The 118th US Congress has been marked by intense feuds among lawmakers, with personal attacks, policy clashes, and petty politics taking center stage. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) led an effort to oust House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA), but her motion to vacate was swiftly blocked in a 359-43-7 vote. Greene's move was publicly backed by only two other Republicans, Reps. Thomas Massie (R-KY) and Paul Gosar (R-AZ), who cited Johnson's recent policy decisions.

Why this matters: The infighting and personal attacks among lawmakers can hinder the passage of crucial legislation, ultimately affecting the lives of millions of Americans. Furthermore, the lack of bipartisanship and cooperation can erode trust in the political system, leading to long-term consequences for the country's governance and stability.

Rep. Mike Lawler (R-NY) slammed Greene's actions, saying she had "gone off the deep end" and that her efforts were "absolutely unacceptable" and did nothing to advance the conservative movement. Lawler also referenced Greene's controversial 2018 post suggesting that a space laser beam might be responsible for devastating wildfires in California, mockingly calling her "Moscow Marjorie" and the "Jew Laser Lady."

Other Republicans also condemned Greene's move. Rep. Steve Womack (R-AR) called it a "petty political stunt" and said some members would rather upend Republicans' work instead of advancing the conservative agenda. Speaker Johnson thanked his colleagues for their support and said he intended to do his job and make decisions based on what he believed was right, stating, "I don't hold grudges. I've got to work with everybody."

The feud between Greene and Johnson is just one of several bitter fights playing out in Congress. Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy is backing Rep. Matt Gaetz's primary challenger, Aaron Dimmock, and has traded harsh words with Gaetz. McCarthy claimed Gaetz waged a campaign to oust him as speaker in retaliation for an ongoing House Ethics Committee investigation into Gaetz.

McCarthy slammed Gaetz in an interview, calling him "the Hunter Biden of the Republican Party" and alleging Gaetz was "getting kicked out of high school, buying coke, and paying minors for sex" while his challenger Dimmock was defending the country. The ethics probe into Gaetz involves allegations of illegal activities with his former associate Joel Greenberg, who was sentenced to 11 years for sex trafficking and other crimes in 2022.

The infighting comes at an inopportune time for Republican leaders, who had hoped to focus on attacking President Biden's handling of the border and economy in the run-up to the 2024 election. Instead, the GOP conference has devolved into bitter feuds and personal attacks. Some Republicans are now discussing a change to House rules to prevent a single member from being able to force a vote to oust the speaker on the floor.

The 118th Congress is shaping up to be one of the least productive and most contentious in recent memory. Greene, who has not sponsored a single bill that has become law, ranks 434th out of 435 members in the Lugar Center's bipartisanship index. This session of Congress has passed fewer bills at this point than any time since the Great Depression. As the feuds and dysfunction continue, it remains to be seen if lawmakers can put aside their differences andsetto work together to address the challenges facing the nation.