“He is sharp. He will be as respected in the homes of our most meaningful, righteous and patriotic donors as he will at the rallies with our most enthusiastic and meaningful activists,” Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz said of newly-minted House Speaker Mike Johnson.
“The swamp is on the run, MAGA is ascendant, and if you don’t think that moving from Kevin McCarthy to MAGA Mike Johnson shows the ascendance of this movement, and where the power of the Republican Party truly lies, then you’re not paying attention,” Gaetz said.
So, who exactly is Mike Johnson?
He's the Louisiana Republican who called out then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi when she ripped up President Donald Trump's State of the Union speech: "She committed a felony when she ripped that paper up." [see below.]
Voices of skepticism greeted the fresh new face on the political landscape from both sides of the aisle. He won, decreed Axios, because he is so new he has not yet made enemies. Others sniped that Johnson could not be trusted because he is, after all, a member of the U.S. Congress.
In a note to reporters, Johnson's spokeswoman Corinne Day answered the question many had about the 51-year-old Louisiana Republican: “Johnson is a father of four, and lives in Benton, Louisiana. He holds both a Bachelor's Degree and Juris Doctor from Louisiana State University. He is the eldest son of a Shreveport firefighter critically burned in the line of duty.”
Scott McKay, a contributing editor at The American Spectator, wrote of the new speaker: "He’s a Christian. And a mild-mannered Christian, at that. But don’t take Mike Johnson’s Ned Flanders manner as a sign of weakness. Mike Johnson’s spine is made of steel, and Mike Johnson knows exactly what time it is in America."
McKay continued: "I know these things because I’ve known Mike Johnson for more than a decade. I’ve known him since before he ever got into politics; I’ve known him as one of the most articulate, principled conservatives Louisiana’s state Legislature has ever seen (which wasn’t all that long); and I’ve known him as a congressman. ... I think you’ll be very impressed when you see what he can do. Finally, there is a Republican leader in Washington who understands — and is committed to — what’s needed to spark our revival as a nation."
In his acceptance speech after being elected speaker, Johnson said: "I want to tell all my colleagues here what I told the Republicans in that room last night; I don’t believe there are any coincidences in a matter like this. I believe that Scripture, the Bible, is very clear that God is the one that raises up those in authority. He raised up each of you, all of us, and I believe that God has ordained and allowed each one of us to be brought here for this specific moment in this time.
"This is my belief. I believe that each one of us has a huge responsibility today to use the gifts that God has given us to serve the extraordinary people of this great country — and they deserve it — and to ensure that our republic remains standing as the great beacon of light and hope and freedom in a world that desperately needs it."
Conservative blogger Robert Stacy McCain noted: "This idea, that God ordains authority, is really the bedrock of Christian teaching on the rule of law. What if we are ruled by fools or tyrants? This is our fault, a curse we have earned by our own sinful disobedience to God. After all, wasn’t it God’s will that Judea should be conquered by the Romans? And it was while the Israelites suffered under the yoke of Rome that Christ was born, setting in motion a chain of events that took centuries to unfold before the Jews were finally restored to the land that God promised to Abraham in their covenant. We do not know, at any given moment, how our current woes and troubles may figure into what God has planned for our future, but if we believe that our lives have meaning and purpose — if we are willing to do whatever duty may command, to serve God even through confusion and humiliation — we are assured by scripture that everything will work out in the end."
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” — Romans 8:28-31 (KJV)
McCain added: "Even Satan himself is powerless to defy God’s will, and while I don’t want to say Matt Gaetz is the Devil incarnate, I’m pleased that the result of Gaetz’s infernal scheme was that this mild-mannered Christian from Louisiana has taken the Speaker’s gavel. Certainly, this must be an auspicious occasion, a sign of God’s favor."
It took less than three minutes for Democrats to start their deluge of whining after Johnson's victory.
One of the first laments came precisely 2 minutes, 26 seconds after the House approved Johnson. It was an email from Rep. Bill Pascrell of New Jersey: “Today Republicans found their goldilocks candidate: a person just extreme enough to satisfy their far-right base but not yet a household name to engender organized opposition.”
Seven minutes later, Rep. Gerry Connolly of Virginia added, “Mike Johnson isn't a household name, people are googling him just to find out who he is. But let me warn you right now: he's as dangerous as anyone in the speaker's chair.”
Gaetz said of the Democrat response: “They are crying, they are hand-wringing, they are bed-wetting over on K Street, because we have an honorable, righteous man who is about to take this position. He’s going to do great things for the country.”
But one huge issue remains a sticking point and was the focus on social media for those who say the issue is Johnson's main disqualifier: He is a member in good standing of the U.S. House of Representatives which has failed to address such key issues as the continued failure to address the integrity of the 2020 election and how to secure the 2024 election.
You prefer it whispered to you in Chinese? https://t.co/gf7us9N7Gm— Speaker Mike Johnson (@SpeakerJohnson) November 19, 2021
Mike Johnson called out Nancy Pelosi after she ripped up Trump's State of the Union speech:"She committed a felony when she ripped that paper up." pic.twitter.com/V77fyjXgil — Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) October 25, 2023
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