The House approved a bill Tuesday without the support of a majority of the Republican Conference, about one month after Speaker John A. Boehner sought to assure his conference that he intended to observe the “Hastert rule.”
The bill, which expands the government’s ability to buy land to protect historical battlefields at a projected cost of $50 million, passed under suspension of the rules, 283-122, with 101 Republicans supporting the bill and 122 voting against it. The Hastert rule, named for former Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., calls for GOP leadership to only allow bills to pass that have secured “a majority of the majority” of the House Republican conference.
Dan Holler, a spokesman for Heritage Action for America, which issued a “key vote” against the bill, said, “Americans of all political stripes agree something has to change, and that Republicans can lead that change if they are willing to reject status quo in Washington. Violating the Hastert Rule to pass $46 million in battlefield pork won’t get the job done, though,” he said. “Last night’s vote was a missed opportunity.”
Although the top members of House GOP leadership voted for the bill, including Budget Chairman Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin, several of the lower tier members of leadership, including Oregon Rep. Greg Walden, the National Republican Congressional Committee chairman, and Oklahoma Rep. James Lankford, the Policy Committee chairman, voted “no.”