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Tags: ben cline | kevin mccarthy | house | gop | motion to vacate | matt gaetz

Rep. Cline to Newsmax: 'Very Important' to Keep Motion to Vacate

By    |   Wednesday, 04 October 2023 09:33 PM EDT

Contrary to a number of other opinions on the matter, Rep. Ben Cline, R-Va., told Newsmax on Wednesday that the motion to vacate is a "very important" rule in the House — one that any new speaker must agree to keep.

"The Freedom Caucus is looking forward to having all the candidates come before us, and we're going to ask them some tough questions," Cline said during an appearance on Newsmax's "The Record With Greta Van Susteren."

"We're going to ask them about this very important motion to vacate rule, which we need to retain, because it's very important that the speakers, moving forward, are held accountable to the House and accountable to the people."

The House is entering uncharted territory after eight hard-line Republicans voted with Democrats and mounted a successful effort to remove fellow Republican Kevin McCarthy from the speakership Tuesday.

Filed by Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., the motion to vacate passed 216-210, making McCarthy the first speaker in U.S. history to be removed from office. Less than nine months after a bruising multi-day battle to gain the gavel, the California Republican told his conference shortly after the final vote that he would not run for the job again.

When asked what an appropriate number of members would be to initiate a motion to vacate, Cline said that the motion to vacate with one member "was created by Thomas Jefferson."

"It was Jefferson's manual around 1800 and it was that way until [former House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi changed it," he said. "She didn't change it to five. She changed it to a majority of her conference. So over 100 people would have to support a vacating motion for Nancy Pelosi. We demanded, and Speaker McCarthy agreed, to reduce that back to one when he became speaker in January."

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said he thinks the next House speaker should do away with the procedural tool that was used to boot McCarthy from his position.

McConnell said little about McCarthy's removal during a Wednesday news conference, but had a suggestion for whoever ultimately replaces him.

"I have no advice to give to House Republicans, except one: I hope whoever the next speaker is gets rid of the motion to vacate," he said. "I think it makes the speaker's job impossible, and the American people expect us to have a functioning government."

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Nicole Wells

Nicole Wells, a Newsmax general assignment reporter covers news, politics, and culture. She is a National Newspaper Association award-winning journalist.

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Contrary to a number of other opinions on the matter, Rep. Ben Cline, R-Va., told Newsmax on Wednesday that the motion to vacate is a "very important" rule in the House - one that any new speaker must agree to keep.
ben cline, kevin mccarthy, house, gop, motion to vacate, matt gaetz
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2023-33-04
Wednesday, 04 October 2023 09:33 PM
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