Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
December 21, 2014

Would Boehner Break the ‘Hastert Rule’ for Syria?

With Speaker John A. Boehner announcing Tuesday that he supports intervention in Syria, there is one question the Ohio Republican has yet to answer: Would he bring the Syria resolution up for a vote if it didn’t have the support of a majority of Republicans?

The short answer: Yes.

Boehner has never said he would abide by the rule in all circumstances, and this seems to be an instance where Boehner would bring Syria to a vote regardless of where his conference stands.

A House GOP leadership aide told CQ Roll Call on Tuesday: “Given the Constitutional requirements, and the fact that so many of our members have asked for a vote, I can’t imagine it would be an issue.”

It’s far from clear, even with strong backing from Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., that a majority of Republicans will be on board, potentially violating the uncodified “Hastert rule” requiring a majority of the majority.

While many in Congress are happy to have the opportunity to weigh in on Syria, far fewer have signaled support for the resolution.

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