Johnson on Tlaib, Santos votes: ‘It was resolved on the floor’

Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) appeared to dismiss the two failed votes over Rep. George Santos’s (R-N.Y.) expulsion and the censure of Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), arguing that the issues were “resolved on the floor.”

“It was resolved on the floor, and we allow members to vote their conscience on that,” Johnson said Wednesday night in a live interview with Fox News anchor Sean Hannity. “It’s important for us to beat the Democrats on policy. There’s a lot of issues that are before us right now.”

Hannity’s interview with Johnson, alongside other House GOP leaders, came shortly after the lower chamber killed a resolution to censure Tlaib for her criticism of Israel after Hamas launched a deadly attack against the country last month.

Twenty-three Republicans joined all House Democrats in the 222-186 vote in favor of a procedural motion that blocked the disciplinary resolution from reaching the floor. Tlaib, the only Palestinian American member of Congress, came under fire from conservative Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (Ga.).

Greene, who brought the resolution to the floor, accused the Michigan Democrat of “antisemitic activity” after Tlaib voiced concern over supplying arms to Israel and called for “lifting the blockade, ending the occupation, and dismantling the apartheid system that creates the suffocating, dehumanizing conditions that can lead to resistance.”

“You know, there is a view here that if you go down that road and you begin to censor one another, you kind of open a Pandora’s box,” Johnson said. “A lot of members of Congress say a lot of really foolish things.”

“But listen, we have very serious business, very serious matters in front of us,” Johnson continued, before pointing to the House GOP’s intention to “stick together.”

Shortly after the censure vote, the House killed a Republican-led effort to oust Santos in the wake of his mounting legal battles. The lower chamber Wednesday voted 213-179-19 against a resolution to expel Santos, marking the second unsuccessful attempt this year to eject the first-term lawmaker from the House.

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