Maddow Blog | President Johnson faces backlash after following Trump directive

Members of the House Intelligence Committee made it painfully clear to House Speaker Mike Johnson that he must make a responsible choice when filling two vacancies on the panel. The Intelligence Committee made a deliberate effort Lately, he has decided to avoid partisan fights over food, and he feared that Johnson would spoil the situation by imposing rabid ideologues on the panel.

In addition, the Republican president had perfectly credible alternatives from his own party, interested in the niches. Rep. Tony Gonzales of Texas, for example, has a background as a cryptologist in the Navy, so it stands to reason that he would have a place on the Intelligence Committee.

All Johnson had to do was avoid radicals such as the Texas representative. Ronny Jacksonwho was demoted by the Pentagon amid scandalous allegations of wrongdoingand Pennsylvania Representative Scott Perry, who was up to the ears in the scandal surrounding efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, even having his phone confiscated by the FBI.

This week, Johnson nevertheless named Perry and Jackson to the House Intelligence Committee.

The Democrats were not happy. Rep. Gerry Connolly of Virginia, for example, called the appointments “a disgrace and a threat to national security”.

But they were not alone. The New York Times reported that the House Speaker didn’t even bother to warn Rep. Mike Turner, the Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, and PunchBowl News reported that Johnson’s decision “is causing angst across the Capitol,” adding: “Several committee members – Republicans and Democrats – say they have concerns about the integrity of the panel following Johnson’s nomination of the two men.” »

Journalist Jake Sherman added that the speaker “really pissed off the members of the Intelligence Committee, who threw themselves at him and [saying] it was a stupid and clownish move. Former Republican Representative Adam Kinzinger, a retired Air Force pilot, described the decision as follows: “mad.”

So why on earth did the Speaker of the House of Representatives choose two unqualified extremists for the House Intelligence Committee, even after committee members urged him not to? PunchBowl’ News report I added this gem:

Oh. So, Donald Trump wanted unqualified loyalists to have access to many of the nation’s most sensitive and classified secrets, and the Speaker of the House followed the criminal’s directive, as if he were an employee of the he failed former president instead of the most powerful member of Congress.

The effects are likely to have repercussions. On the one hand, Johnson’s position within his conference was already fragile, and alienating members at Trump’s behest will do him no favors in the months and years to come.

On the other hand, Kevin McCarthy has gained a reputation as one of the weakest speakers in American history. The more Johnson lets his party’s presumptive nominee take the lead on Capitol Hill, the more he will have a similar reputation.

And finally, there are broader implications to keep in mind. THE…

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