In a turn of events that might defy expectations, the House of Representatives, on Tuesday night, passed Speaker Mike Johnson’s continuing resolution with surprising support. The resolution sailed through with a 336-95 vote, and its smooth passage through the Senate seems all but certain.
For quite some time, I’ve held the view that Democrats might secretly desire a government shutdown. My anticipation was that this funding process would drag on until the eleventh hour, reaching the looming November 17 deadline.
Initially, Democrats had vocally opposed Speaker Johnson’s “laddered” continuing resolution. However, in a sudden shift this week, Democratic leaders began signaling their inclination to support it.
What prompted this swift about-face? Notably, five Republicans had expressed opposition to Johnson’s stopgap funding bill, tipping the scales as Johnson could only afford four defections within his party. Consequently, the onus fell on Democrats to prevent a shutdown. Despite 93 Republicans voting against it, the Democratic majority came through to avert the looming crisis. Even though the White House initially criticized it as extreme, there seems little doubt that Biden will now sign it.
The burning question here is: why the sudden cooperation from Democrats, especially after previously labeling the resolution as excessive? Their apparent endorsement of this CR seems more like a tactical maneuver than genuine support.
Recall the previous scenario – Democrats initially opposed former Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s stopgap funding bill, only to eventually back it begrudgingly. However, they resorted to various delay tactics, exploiting procedural rules and even resorting to disrupting the proceedings with a fire alarm incident spearheaded by Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.).
It appeared we might witness a replay of history with Johnson’s resolution, reminiscent of McCarthy’s struggle that ultimately led to his ousting from the speakership. Could it be that Democrats altered their strategy this time, anticipating Johnson’s potential downfall to sow chaos within the GOP? The motives behind their sudden cooperation remain ambiguous, but their track record raises skepticism about their true intentions.
The Democrats’ intentions remain shrouded in secrecy, leaving room for suspicion about their ulterior motives. Their seemingly subtle maneuvers warrant scrutiny as their actions echo a potential covert agenda, adding layers to the ongoing political intrigue.