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GOP Civil War As Trump Plays Pacifier

On Friday, former President Trump provided crucial support to House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.), amid ongoing challenges to his leadership from the far-right members of his party.

This endorsement is significant as Trump reiterated his support for Johnson while conservative stalwart Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) intensifies her critique of the Speaker, showcasing further divisions within the GOP. During a joint event at Trump’s Florida resort, Trump’s comments served as a counter to Greene’s aggressive stance.

Greene, undeterred, maintained her position, recently signaling her readiness to initiate a motion to remove Johnson, following her accusations earlier in the week that he was too accommodating to Democrats. “It’s unfortunate that people bring [motion to vacate] up because right now we have much bigger problems,” Trump remarked shortly after several conservatives criticized Johnson for his stance on an amendment related to the reauthorization of section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).

Johnson, the least seasoned Speaker in over a century, assumed the role five months ago after the unprecedented removal of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Ca.) from the position. “He’s doing about as good as you’re going to do and I’m sure that Marjorie understands that and she’s a very good friend of mine, and I know she has a lot of respect for the speaker,” Trump added.

Despite her ongoing criticisms, Greene expressed her unwavering support for Trump’s reelection efforts and the GOP’s congressional goals on her X social media platform, yet reiterated her disapproval of Johnson, especially his recent legislative decisions related to FISA and federal law enforcement funding.

Trump and Johnson were together Friday to promote a bill centered on election integrity, focusing on immigration and voting issues, an appearance that seemed aimed at bolstering Johnson’s position, unlike the less vocal support Trump offered during McCarthy’s leadership challenge.

As Johnson navigates these internal party tensions, he remains a prominent figure in key Republican initiatives, having been instrumental during Trump’s first impeachment defense and in challenging the 2020 election results through legal briefs.

Inside Trump’s circle, there’s concern about another potentially disruptive leadership battle, though many GOP lawmakers who supported McCarthy’s ouster have hinted they might not back a motion to vacate against Johnson at this juncture. While some conservatives have not ruled out supporting Greene’s potential motion, none have publicly committed to it.

Zooming out, Trump also announced during the press briefing that he plans to testify in the upcoming hush money trial, which is set to begin Monday.

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