Haris Alic explains for the Washington Free Beacon why at least one leading Republican sees a silver lining hiding behind the dark cloud of Nancy Pelosi’s likely return to the U.S. House speaker’s office.
Louisiana congressman Mike Johnson, the incoming chairman of the Republican Study Committee, believes that Democratic control of the House of Representatives, at least for the next two years, presents an opportunity for the GOP to fine-tune its policies and message in order to appeal to a new generation of voters.
In a lunch-time conversation with Arthur Brooks, the president of the American Enterprise Institute, and outgoing RSC chairman Mark Walker (N.C.), Johnson laid out his priorities and vision for the 116th Congress.
“We have dual roles in the incoming Congress,” Johnson said. “We have to play defense very well. We’ve got to hold the line on many of the great strides we’ve been able to make … during the first two years of the Trump administration because as [the Democrats] have said clearly they want to roll all these things back, so much of it.”
“We have a defensive posture that we have to play, but we’re going to be playing offense as well,” Johnson added. “We’re not going to be wandering in the wilderness for the next two years.”
Johnson’s remarks reflect the reality that the RSC and the entire House GOP face as they find themselves in the minority for the first time since 2011. Stripped of committee chairmanships and the other benefits delegated to members of the majority party, House Republicans will have limited legislative input for the final two years of President Donald Trump’s first term.