Figures in his close-knit circle of allies are starting to privately wonder whether he can survive an all-but-certain floor vote this fall to remain speaker of the House. And, for the first time, many top aides and lawmakers in the House do not believe he will run for another term as House leader in 2017…
Top lawmakers and aides in leadership expect Meadows or another Boehner antagonist to try and force a vote before the end of the year on whether to keep Boehner as speaker.
Boehner is nearly certain to lose the support of the 25 lawmakers who voted against him last time, plus a few more who’ve grown frustrated with him. But Democrats would also get a say, and should they vote to keep Boehner as speaker — opposing him would invite chaos, and it’s anyone’s guess who they’d have to deal with as his replacement — Boehner would likely retain the gavel until January 2017, unless he decided to call it quits sooner. Meadows did not force a vote in July, but GOP leadership assumes someone will this fall.
The first pressure point is coming soon. Government funding runs dry at the end of September, and conservatives are threatening to oppose any budget bill that continues to fund Planned Parenthood. That is the leading priority of the House Freedom Caucus, the group of 30 or so conservatives that tries to drag leadership to the right.