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Speaker Mike Johnson Honors God Under Difficult Circumstances: 'Trying to Be a Servant Leader'

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-Louisiana (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)
House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-Louisiana (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)

CAPITOL HILL – When we met in the ceremonial room here on Capitol Hill, House Speaker Mike Johnson looked at ease although his job has been anything but.  "It's important to note this is not a job I ever aspired to," Speaker Johnson tells CBN News. "We got ourselves in a bit of a pickle here." 

That would specifically be a GOP pickle that can go from sweet to sour at any time. He's the first speaker in history to take over in the middle of a session and finds himself in a one-seat Republican majority and a split caucus. 

CBN's David Brody interviews House Speaker Mike Johnson on Capitol Hill (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)
CBN's David Brody interviews House Speaker Mike Johnson on Capitol Hill (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)

Leading a House Divided

"Democrats typically tend to think more kind of like a union, they sort of stick together, they're more monolithic," Johnson says. "They move as a herd.  They're more kind of social animals. Republicans, by contrast, are a rugged individualist. You know, we care deeply about our core principles and our philosophy, and we're not easily moved. And that's a great blessing usually, but when you're trying to keep all those cats together and move in the same direction with a one-vote majority, it sometimes presents challenges." 

Challenges such as House Freedom Caucus members frustrated over what they call bad spending deals with Democrats, rushed through the process in typical D.C. fashion. They're clearly concerned about his way of governing.
"So what some of my colleagues will privately admit, but not always publicly, is they understand that we have the biggest challenge that's ever been presented to the Congress," Johnson explains. 

CBN's David Brody interviews House Speaker Mike Johnson on Capitol Hill (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)
CBN's David Brody interviews House Speaker Mike Johnson on Capitol Hill (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)

A Push to Oust Johnson

That hasn't stopped Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene – sometimes referred to simply as MTG – from filing a motion to vacate, in a move to jettison Speaker Johnson. She doesn't think he's standing up enough for conservative policy positions. Of course, that's not easy when Democrats control the White House, Senate, and you barely have a Republican majority in the House. "I have virtually zero leverage to be able to negotiate and get a better package," Johnson says. 

As to whether the House Speaker has spoken to MTG, he tells CBN News, "I tried over the two-week break. She wasn't interested in speaking." 

The firebrand congresswoman from Georgia has essentially called Johnson a Deep State operative and has attacked his faith as well. "I try to follow all the biblical admonitions as I do every day," Johnson explains. "One of them says you 'bless those who persecute you.' I'm getting a lot of practice in that right now and that is, 'A soft word turns away wrath.'" 

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However, that doesn't mean he's not pushing back against her threat. "We've got to demonstrate to the American people that we can keep the train on the tracks, and so pulling a motion to vacate or removing a Speaker right now is exactly the opposite of what we need to show the country." 

The concern among some in the GOP is that if Johnson is booted out, a Democrat Speaker could emerge. Johnson concurs. "If the chair is vacated, it's certainly possible you get a Democrat Speaker," he explains. 

Coming soon, yet another battle: Speaker Johnson will need to decide whether to put a Ukraine funding bill to a vote, something conservative members do not want.  It could trigger that motion to vacate. "Well, we're working through all those issues with all of our members trying to build that consensus that we talked about," Johnson says.  

CBN's David Brody interviews House Speaker Mike Johnson on Capitol Hill (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)
CBN's David Brody interviews House Speaker Mike Johnson on Capitol Hill (Photo: Mario Gonzalez/CBN News)

On Abortion

On the issue of abortion, consensus will be difficult for the GOP, especially now that former President Trump just refused to endorse a federal abortion ban – a move the avid pro-life Speaker tells us he understands. 

"What we have to do right now, our challenge is to build a culture of life...before you can have a political consensus on an issue that's this controversial, you have to build a cultural consensus first." 

So does that mean not pursuing a federal abortion ban now is the smart move in these political times? "Well, I'm saying that we recognize right now that the votes don't exist in Congress to have a federal ban at any level," Speaker Johnson tells CBN News. "There's a lot of work that needs to be done." 

Democrats' Illegal Immigration Strategy

One issue where the House GOP seems unified is illegal immigration, arguing President Biden's policies have been disastrous for America. "I think they want that open border and I think their actions show that," Johnson says. 

Asked to explain why they want an open border, Johnson presented his theory. "It sounds like a conspiracy theory, but I think it's actually true that the ultimate design is to turn some of these illegals into voters for their cause and to change the census outcome in 2030 because if you can distribute people around the country in strategic ways and put them in strategic places, the census does not just count citizens, it counts residents, all persons. And that could dramatically affect the map in Congress. I mean, it sounds like some sort of crazy criminal design and in my view, it is. But I think that's what they're doing."

A Deep Christian Faith
Johnson will certainly speak his mind, especially when it comes to his Christian faith – a stance that's led to some criticism. 

"We've been mocked and I mean mercilessly in the press," says Johnson. "They've tried to attack me and my family – my wife and children. And look, we're undaunted by it. I mean that is going to happen if you stand for truth."  

Asked if he sees America in spiritual warfare terms, he didn't hesitate. "I do, I mean, if you're a Christian, that's how you understand these things," Johnson tells CBN News. "We're really in a battle of worldviews right now. It's not even a battle between Republicans and Democrats anymore. It's two competing visions over what kind of nation we are, who we are as a people... remember Marxism, communism, socialism are grounded in the belief that there is no Creator, there is no God. And that's the essence. That's the foundation of their belief. That is not who we are." 

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When asked what happens to America if that godless philosophy wins out, he stated the outcome clearly. "Ronald Reagan said if we ever forget that we're one nation under God, we will be a nation gone under." 

Speaker Johnson is determined to do his very best to make sure that doesn't happen on his watch. "I have no value other than as a servant," Johnson says. "I'm trying to be a servant leader here and at a very challenging time, in very difficult circumstance...and that's my humble prayer every day, that we would be able to serve well and bring honor to God in the process."

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