Rand Paul slams Speaker Johnson, no difference from Democrats

Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) isn’t swayed by former President Donald Trump’s confidence in House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.).

Johnson cast the stunning, tie-breaking vote against an amendment to FISA reauthorization that would have upheld the Fourth Amendment and required the government to obtain a warrant before spying on American citizens.

As far as Paul is concerned, there may as well be a Democrat leading the House.

“Speaker Johnson was incredibly wrong,” the Kentucky senator told Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures” host Maria Bartiromo.

“He broke the tie,” Paul said. “He voted with the Democrats.’

‘Here we have the leader of the Republicans in the House votes with the Democrats against a warrant requirement,” he explained. “We also have Speaker Johnson voting for the spending package once again with a majority of the Democrats.”

“As I see it now,” Paul said, “I’m not so sure there’s a difference between Mike Johnson being in charge and the Democrats being in charge.”

Paul isn’t the only one voicing his frustration with the speaker.

Following Johnson’s vote, fellow Kentuckian Rep. Thomas Massie (R) said it was “a sad day for America.”

“This is how the Constitution dies,” Massie wrote on X. “By a tie vote, the amendment to require a warrant to spy on Americans goes down in flames. This is a sad day for America.”

“The Speaker doesn’t always vote in the House,” Massie noted, “but he was the tie breaker today. He voted against warrants.”

On Tuesday, in response to Johnson’s passage of “the second minibus, H.Res.1102,” Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) filed a “motion to vacate,” claiming that the speaker “broke our conference rules and the promises we made to our voters.”

Johnson, meanwhile, appears to be leaning on Trump’s support to keep the all-important gavel.

In his own segment with Bartiromo, the speaker boasted of his recent visit to Mar-a-Lago.

“I spent hours with the president on Friday,” Johnson said. “He and I talk frequently, many times, usually, in a week. We have a long relationship.”

(Video: YouTube)

“He’s 100 percent with me,” Johnson stated. “And he said, ‘We’ll get this job done. That’s a distraction.’ What Marjorie is done with a motion to vacate is not helpful for our party, for our mission to save the country. Because if we don’t grow the House majority, keep the House majority, win the Senate, and win back the White House for President Trump, we are going to lose the Republic.”

Shutting down the government, he argued, “wasn’t an option.”

“When the government shuts down, imagine TSA agents not being paid and flights being canceled for Americans,” Johnson said. “Imagine Border Patrol agents not being paid and those open borders, the responsibility for that being shifted to us. Imagine troops not being paid at this dangerous time. So that simply wasn’t an option for us.”

Speaking to reporters on Friday, Trump praised the speaker’s performance.

“I think he’s doing a very good job,” the former president said. “He’s doing about as good as you’re going to do. And I’m sure that Marjorie understands that.”

(Video: YouTube)

Despite Trump’s support, after Paul’s appearance with Bartiromo, Greene backed the senator’s remarks.

“I completely agree,” she wrote on X. “Speaker Johnson is calling my motion to vacate a ‘distraction’ and ‘not helpful to our party.'”

“In reality,” she stated, “a Republican elected Speaker who fully funds and supports the Democrat’s agenda is destroying our party and will cause us to LOSE the majority.”

“Johnson hasn’t held his ground,” Paul told Bartiromo. “He has power. He has a majority use the power of the purse.”

“Speaker Johnson, do something to make us think you are different than the Democrats,” the senator said. “But so far I don’t see a lot of difference.”

Melissa Fine

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