Can House Republicans Find Unity?
Last week, 11 members from the Republican Freedom Caucus voted against a rule to proceed to several messaging bills on federal regulations and gas stoves. These 11 members voted against the rule to voice their frustration with the debt limit deal. This was the first time in more than two decades that a rule vote was defeated in the House. It’s a big deal because a rule vote in the House is essentially a rule supporting party leadership.
This week starts with this in-fighting. The House is scheduled to vote today at 6:30 pm EDT on a motion to reconsider the previous rule vote. Speaker McCarthy has held talks with Freedom Caucus members to try to find a solution on the rules issue. We will be watching to see how this plays out today and throughout the week.
Despite the drama over the House floor, the committees will still do their work. This week, there are several hearings and markups across the House and Senate. The House Education and Workforce Committee will mark up a telehealth bill, and Secretary Becerra will testify in front of the committee on the US Department of Health and Human Services’ priorities. Separately, the House Energy and Commerce Committee will hold hearings related to public health preparedness and another hearing on rare diseases. The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee will hold a markup on several healthcare-related bills.
But if House Republican in-fighting continues, the number of days left on the calendar will begin to diminish. And that means House Republicans’ vision of regular order and timely consideration of bills to send to the Senate might be unwinding and leading to omnibus legislation at the end of the year.