Rep. Steve King said Thursday that House Speaker John A. Boehner’s speakership could be threatened if he mishandles the pushback against President Obama’s new deportation amnesty.
Mr. King, an Iowa Republican who has led opposition to granting legal status to illegal immigrants, said much will depend on how Mr. Boehner handles votes next week, when the House will have to decide how to fund government operations for the next year.
“Let’s see how this shakes out next week,” Mr. King said on Tim Constantine’s Capitol Hill Show, a partner of The Washington Times. “But I think that if the decision that comes from the leadership team, and primarily the speaker, calls upon House Republicans to vote to fund the president’s lawless unconstitutional acts, I think that question needs to be raised, and that’ll be the dialogue that takes place on up until January 6th, when the constitutional vote would take place here on the floor of the House.”
House Republicans have already voted to nominate Mr. Boehner as their choice to be House speaker in the new Congress that begins in January.
But the full House must vote to ratify that choice, and if enough Republicans refuse to back Mr. Boehner it could cause the GOP to have to regroup and offer a new candidate.
Mr. Boehner’s plan is to have the House vote later Thursday on a bill to nullify Mr. Obama’s actions, though that legislation won’t be taken up by the Senate. Next week, Mr. Boehner will have the House vote to fund all of the government through the end of the fiscal year with the exception of homeland security operations, which would only be funded through early next year.
The GOP-led House, joined by a newly GOP-led Senate, would then have another chance to use the power of the purse to try to halt Mr. Obama, Mr. Boehner says.
Still, the speaker told reporters Thursday that Congress’s hand is constrained.
“We have limited options in terms of how we can deal with this. But there are options out there, and we’re going to pursue those options,” he said.