MAGA Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene only voted for the defense budget because House Speaker Kevin McCarthy promised her a key committee seat.
House Republicans on Friday passed a national defense bill packed with bigoted amendments targeting abortion, LGBTQ rights, and diversity generally. Four Democrats broke ranks to help vote the bill through, but it wasn’t clear until the final vote whether enough Republicans would unite behind the measure.
Normally a staunch McCarthy ally, Greene was actually planning on voting against the bill as recently as Thursday night—until the speaker promised her a seat on the House-Senate conference committee for the defense budget, CNN’s Manu Raju reported.
Greene ultimately voted for the bill, and later confirmed that McCarthy’s offer is why she changed her mind. When Raju asked whether McCarthy’s proffered deal was what “got [her] there,” Greene replied, “Right, because I have the opportunity to continue to do what I did this week.”
“And I want that opportunity,” she continued. “I think that’s an important opportunity for me to have to represent not only the people in my district, but the people all over America that do not want their tax dollars spent on an NDAA that funds a foreign war.”
Greene was referring to aid for Ukraine, which has been a point of contention among Republicans, many of whom want to stop sending funds and supplies to Kyiv as it fends off the Russian invasion.
McCarthy’s deal with Greene is yet another sign of just how much the speaker has ceded to his party’s farthest-right wing. McCarthy made multiple deals with the House Freedom Caucus in order to become speaker, and he is constantly bowing to them as he tries to carry out his agenda.