'A good deal for America': Robert Reich offers Dems a way to undermine GOP power during House speaker war

'A good deal for America': Robert Reich offers Dems a way to undermine GOP power during House speaker war
Robert Reich in 2013 (Wikimedia Commons)

Former U.S. Secretary of Labor Robert Reich is attempting to appeal to Democratic lawmakers as House Republicans continue their public quarrel over Rep. Kevin McCarthy's (R-Calif.) bid for Speaker of the House.

Days have passed and the Republican majority is still unable to unify when it comes to making a decision about the top-ranking decision. Now, Reich is offering a word of advice to Democrats.

In a new op-ed published by The Guardian, Reich began with a brief overview of the political chaos that has ensued since Republicans took control of the House.

READ MORE: Robert Reich: Electoral College reform is 'urgent' as the Supreme Court considers 'bonkers' election theory

"Over the past two days the Republican leader Kevin McCarthy of California lost six votes for the top job because the extreme MAGA right wing won’t support him," Reich wrote.

"To get their support, extremists in the House are demanding that any member be able to call a vote at any time to oust him, which would put McCarthy on a very short leash controlled by the MAGA right (with Trump indirectly controlling them)," he wrote.

With all of the political roadblocks Republicans have created, Reich asked: "Does this mean the rest of us have to sit back and allow a tiny minority of extreme right-wing MAGA House Republicans controlled by Donald Trump to hijack congressional Republicans, who in turn will hijack the entire House, and thereby hijack much of Congress?"

Instead of simply allowing Republicans to run amuck, Reich offered an "alternative" as he explained why the suggestion might be a viable remedy for this situation: team up with moderate Republican lawmakers like Reps. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) or David Joyce (R-Ohio).

READ MORE: 'House Karen': GOP lawmaker lampooned for blaming Republican infighting on Democrats and their snacks

"There’s an alternative," Reich wrote, "and House Democratsand the few remaining 'moderate' Republicans should take it: come together to make someone like Michigan’s moderate Republican Fred Upton or Ohio’s David Joyce the speaker of the House."

He also noted, "There’s no rule that says the party in control of the House must decide on the speaker by themselves. All anyone needs to be speaker is 218 votes (or a majority of all members present), regardless of party. House Democrats and moderate Republicans could come up with the 218 votes to put Upton or Joyce over the top."

Reich went on to explain why it might be beneficial to appeal to Upton and Joyce as he offered insight into the lawmakers' political perspectives.

"I say 'moderate' only in comparison to the rest of the Republican House. The Conference Group at least wants the government to function," he explained. "Joyce is hardly a progressive. During Trump’s presidency, he voted in line with Trump’s stated position 91.8% of the time. And he voted against impeaching Trump for his role in the January 6 insurrection."

He added, "But Joyce is not a MAGA Republican. He refused to sign the Texas amicus brief that tried to overturn the results of the presidential election. He was also one of the few Republican House members who did not object to the counting of electoral college votes on January 6, 2021."

The former White House official also offered a perspective of how both sides could benefit from such an agreement.

"What should Democrats ask for in return? A power-sharing agreement similar to the one agreed to in the last Senate, in which each party got the same number of seats on all committees," he wrote. "The deal will enable the government to function and will simultaneously repudiate the MAGA extremists. It’s a good deal for America."

READ MORE: Robert Reich predicts a grim political future for the GOP as House Republicans scramble to pick a speaker

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