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Johnson calls motion to vacate a ‘distraction’

House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) spoke out against “dissension” within the Republican Party on Sunday, saying the motion to vacate him from the speakership is a “distraction” from the most important thing the party is trying to do.

“I don’t think it does,” Johnson told Fox News’s Trey Gowdy when asked how the motion helps the GOP grow its majority. “And I think all of my other Republican colleagues recognize this is a distraction from our mission. Again, the mission is to save the republic. And the only way we can do that is if we grow the House majority, win the Senate, and win the White House.”

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) filed a motion to vacate over a week ago, accusing the speaker of failing to do more to secure America’s border and for working with Democrats on a bipartisan spending deal. However, the Georgia firebrand did not file it as a privileged motion, so it is just “hanging there,” as Johnson put it.

The speaker told Gowdy he has the same frustrations as Greene, whom he called “a friend,” and said they have texted, even on Sunday, about the issues they face as a conference.

“The Democrats know when we don’t all stand together with our razor-thin majority, then they have a better negotiation position. And that’s why we got some of the things we didn’t like,” he said of the spending deal. “Now we fought like warrior poets to keep some of the Senate earmarks out of the bill, and we were successful in getting a lot of the terrible stuff out, but a few of them made it through, and that’s what Marjorie’s upset about, and I am too.”

Johnson then said he wants to talk to her about “reforming” the budgeting and spending process for the future, saying, “That’s what Republicans are for. That’s the transformational kind of changes that we can forge if we all stand together.”

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