top of page

Thanks, Democrats for keeping the lights on, Brunswick Beacon

In September, Speaker Kevin McCarthy faced a looming government shutdown because 90 Republican representatives refused to pay the bills. McCarthy turned to Democrats to keep the government running. The final vote was 335-91. Every Democrat but one voted for McCarthy’s bill.

That kept the government operating until November 17, giving House Republicans time to do their constitutional duty: Article I, Section 7, clause 1 of the U.S. Constitution requires that “All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives.”

Instead of getting to work, Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and his fellow MAGA Republicans turned on McCarthy for working with Democrats. “Nobody trusts Kevin McCarthy,” Gaetz said, adding that the only way McCarthy would remain speaker is “if Democrats bail him out.” On Oct. 2, McCarthy became the first House Speaker to be removed. What followed, effectively, was a 23-day government shutdown because Republicans couldn’t pick a new speaker. With no speaker, the House couldn’t function.

First, they tried Majority Leader Steve Scalise, McCarthy’s second-in-command. Rep. Jim Jordan sabotaged him and Scalise withdrew. Jordan lost three rounds of votes and was replaced by Majority Whip Tom Emmer. Trump called Emmer “a globalist RINO,” who “never respected the power of a Trump endorsement.” Emmer withdrew. Extremist Mike Johnson (R-LA) was ultimately selected on Oct. 25. Gaetz was thrilled, saying the selection of “MAGA Mike Johnson” shows the real power of the Republican party lies with MAGA.

Perhaps, but when Republican opposition prevented Johnson from passing bills funding Financial Services and General Government appropriations and the Departments of Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, he, like McCarthy before him, turned to Democrats to avert another government shutdown. Once again, 209 Democrats bailed out a Republican speaker, while 93 Republicans voted to shutter the government.

Johnson learned what McCarthy already knew: Republicans aren’t even trying to govern. Give thanks, once again, that Democrats are there to bail us all out.

Shelley Allen, Ph.D.

Chair, Brunswick County Democratic Party

Holden Beach


bottom of page