WASHINGTON. DC — House of Representatives Speaker John Bohener (R-OH) stunned political colleagues and rivals alike on Sept. 25 by announcing that at the end of October he will resign from Congress.
The beleaguered Republican leader, hampered by a Republican-controlled Congress’ inability to move legislation forward to combat President Obama’s agenda, and facing increasing challenges from a forceful rightwing faction within his own ranks, informed his GOP caucus at the Sept. 25 morning closed-door session, Politico reported.
The Associated Press noted that on the previous day, Pope Francis spoke to Congress at Boehner’s request, deeming that the high point in the speaker’s career.
Rep. John Mica (R-FL) said Boehner “just does not want to become the issue. Some people have tried to make him the issue both in Congress and outside,” AP reported.
Boehner became Speaker, and thus third in line for the presidency, in January 2011, after Republicans gained control of the House in the 2010 midterm elections. Republicans padded their House lead in 2014, but Boehner was unable to mobilize that momentum into meaningful legislation, leading to widespread dissatisfaction with the GOP establishment by Republican voters, as most recently evidenced by national presidential polls, which show political outsiders dominating the field.