Gaetz Floats Bipartisan Compromise On Motion To Vacate: Bad to Worse Scenario

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) now haws an openness to making a deal on changing the procedural tool he used in securing the removal of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) as House speaker.

He actually urged colleagues on Thursday to consider reforms proposed by Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) in exchange for changing the rules to make it harder to get a no-confidence vote in the chamber’s leader.

“Ok. Let’s negotiate. My GOP colleagues want to raise the threshold on the motion to vacate. This is a question for all of them,” Gaetz said in a post to X. “If we enact the reforms [Khanna] lays out here…. How high would you like the MTV threshold to be? Because I’ll basically give you whatever you want on the MTV for this stuff.”

Gaetz previously shared a post that highlighted Khanna announcing an anti-corruption plan, particularly proposals for term limits in Congress, cracking down on congressional stock trading, and stemming the flow of money from lobbyists and PACs.

A stream of communication began as Khanna responded to a Washington Examiner reporter posting about Gaetz’s offer.

“Let’s push for a floor vote on any three of the items [Gaetz]! Instead of having members call each other names, it’s time to recognize the American people are fed up with how this place functions, don’t have a high opinion of us, & are demanding some common sense changes,” Khanna said.

“How many Democrats can you deliver for this agenda? I cap out somewhere around 8,” Gaetz said in reply.

“You know what’s sad, Matt,” Khanna responded. “Not more than 10. Let’s be honest with folks. The American people should know that LESS than 20 members advocate for banning PAC & lobbyist money, even though that polls at 80%. Many need to be shamed into voting for it once it’s put on the floor.”

The “motion to vacate the chair” is a parliamentary tool that has rarely been used throughout the history of the United States.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) encouraged the next speaker to get rid of the “motion to vacate” mechanism. “It makes the speaker’s job impossible, and the American people expect us to have a functioning government,” McConnell said.