South Carolina Rep. Mick Mulvaney said he did not participate in the attempted coup of Speaker John Boehner Tuesday because his fellow Republicans lawmakers lied to him the last time he tried to oust Boehner.
“There was an attempt to oust John Boehner as Speaker of the House today. I didn’t participate in it,” Mulvaney said on Facebook after Boehner was solidly re-elected speaker over Reps. Daniel Webster and Louie Gohmert. “That may make some people back home angry. I understand that, but I’ve got some experience with coup attempts against the Speaker, and what I learned two years ago factored heavily in my decision today not to join the mutiny.”
“First, I learned two years ago that people lie about how they are going to vote. And you cannot go into this kind of fight with people you do not trust. We walked onto the floor two years ago with signed pledges – handwritten promises – from more than enough people to deny Boehner his job. But when it came time to vote, almost half of those people changed their minds – including some of those who voted against Boehner today. Fool me once, shame on you…”
Mulvaney also took some shots at Gohmert and Webster.
“Some people wrote me encouraging me to vote for Louie Gohmert. I like Louie, but let’s be clear: Louie Gohmert was – is – never ever going to be Speaker of the House,” Mulvaney said. “I respect his passion, but he isn’t a credible candidate. That was proved today by the fact that he got three votes, despite all the national media attention he managed to grab. My colleague who got the most anti-Boehner votes was Daniel Webster of Florida who got 12 votes. I like Daniel. He is a nice guy, and a good thinker…but his lifetime Heritage Action score is 60% (by comparison, mine is 91%). And this was supposed to be the savior of the conservative movement? Would the House really have been more conservative if he had won?
“Some people tried to argue that voting against Boehner would give conservatives leverage, or somehow force him to lead in a more conservative fashion, even if the coup attempt failed. All I can say to that is that the exact opposite happened two years ago: conservatives were marginalized, and Boehner was even freer to work with moderates and Democrats. My guess is that the exact same thing will happen again now.”
Mulvaney obviously took some criticism that got to him, as evidenced by the comments under his Facebook post.
“Finally, the most troubling accusation I have heard regarding the Boehner vote is that I have ‘sold out’ my conservative principles. All I can say is this: take a look at my voting record. It is one of the most conservative in Congress.”