Republican Congressman Won’t Challenge Speaker John Boehner

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 10, 2012   |   2:31PM   |   Washington, DC

A conservative GOP congressman announced he will not challenge pro-life House Speaker John Boehner, squelching rumors that the top Republican in Washington will face a contest for his position.

The office of Rep. Tom Price’s (R-GA), a pro-life lawmaker from Georgia, told conservative media outlets mid-day today that he will not seek the Speakership in an inter-party fight against Boehner.

While some conservative groups have been looking to support a challenge to the pro-life House GOP leader, other conservatives say it would be detrimental at a time when Republicans need to rally together to present a united opposition to President Barack Obama and Senate Democrats during the next two years.

“Congressman Price is not running for speaker,” a Price spokesman told the Daily Caller in an email. “He is focused on real solutions to get America back on track. Those solutions reside in fundamental principles that embrace individual opportunity and economic freedom.”

Earlier in the day, before the announcement, the Daily Caller reported:

In a Monday story titled “Boehner’s Biggest Threat,” National Review reported that Price is being buzzed about as a possible Republican challenger to Boehner if a “debt deal” goes “sour.”

Price, who is also thought to be considering a run for the U.S. Senate in Georgia, won’t say if he’s thinking about running.

But he acknowledged to the magazine that conservatives are not happy with Boehner, who has drawn fire in recent days from several Republican congressmen who say the GOP leadership has removed them from desired committee assignments because they are too conservative or libertarian. Boehner insists that isn’t the case.

Price is also mentioned as a potential challenger to Georgia Sen. Saxby Chambliss. In 2014, Chambliss will be up for reelection and Price is considered a possible primary contender.

Meanwhile, another report before Price’s announcement, had a conservative group endorsing Republican lawmakers to challenge the current GOP leadership.

Conservative group American Majority Action (AMA) will endorse three conservative Republicans to replace current House GOP leadership later on Monday, Breitbart News has learned.

The group will endorse Republican Reps. Jeb Hensarling of Texas, Jim Jordan of Ohio and Tom Price of Georgia to replace House Speaker John Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Whip Kevin McCarthy. AMA has been pushing the #FireBoehner hashtag on Twitter and encouraging people to stand up against the Speaker for abandoning conservatism.

“Activists have been asking us, ‘If not Boehner, then who?’ American Majority Action suggests Congressmen Jeb Hensarling, Tom Price, and Jim Jordan,” AMA’s Celia Bigelow told Breitbart News. “All three have a proven record of standing on strong conservative principles–something our current leadership clearly lacks.”

During his time as Speaker, Boehner has kept a 100% pro-life voting record and earned the support of pro-life groups for both allowing and supporting votes on key pro-life legislation in the House and for pressing Obama to cut taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood. Obama twice refused Boehner’s suggestion that the abortion business be de-funded.

According to the National Right to Life Committee, in 90 votes Boehner has cast on pro-life issues — ranging from abortion and abortion funding, to de-funding Planned Parenthood, to keep abortion out of Obamacare, and on bioethics issues — Boehner has never cast a single pro-abortion vote.

NRLC was so impressed with Boehner’s record that, in June 2010, it gave him an award for his part in leading the opposition in Congress to the pro-abortion health care bill President Barack Obama signed into law. Boehner made opposition to the massive abortion funding it contained a centerpiece of his opposition to it.

“In all the important leadership offices he has held, John Boehner has been a faithful defender of unborn children, disabled persons and seniors whose right to life may be jeopardized. He has consistently voted to pass pro-life leg and block anti-life legislation in his two decades in the House,” NRLC co-director Darla St. Martin said in introducing Boehner.

She told the crowd of hundreds of cheering pro-life advocates, “Boehner has been an active supporter of a number of successful pro-life efforts over the years.

“He has been a major impediment to the advance of the Obama-Pelosi-Reid pro-abortion agenda,” she said. “Boehner relentlessly used his office to attempt to thwart” the massive abortion funding in the health care bill and he used the “sheer force of his will as he confronted Pelosi and other pro-abortion leaders” on the legislation.

“Not a single one of the 178 House Republicans voted for that deadly pro-abortion Obamacare bill,” thanks to Boehner, St. Martin added. “On behalf of every pro-lifer here and across America, we thank you John Boehner.”

That was the second time last year that Boehner received an award for his pro-life efforts in opposing the government-run health care bill that funds and promotes abortions. Boehner choked up as he received an award at a reception sponsored by Americans United for Life. Boehner received the 2010 Henry J. Hyde Defender of Life Award and he became emotional during his acceptance speech as he talked about his family and Hyde, the pro-life luminary whose name still adorns the annual amendment to stop taxpayer funded abortions outside the health care bill.

“Look, Henry Hyde was a hero of mine,” he said. “I’ve always believed that life begins at conception. I’ve always thought abortion was wrong, and speaking out against it was never difficult. It was a moral position I felt very strongly about.”

Boehner was moved to tears and he lost his composure telling the crowd he has 11 brothers and sisters, saying, “I know it wasn’t convenient for my mother to have 12 of us.”

“But I’m sure glad they’re all here,” he said, as he left the stage, unable to continue.

Boehner continued his fight to oppose abortion and abortion funding this year when he pressed President Barack Obama to agree to revoking federal taxpayer funding for the abortion business in a deal between Republicans and Democrats on legislation to fund the federal government. Boehner pressed Obama twice and Obama refused his request. Obama agreed to reinstate a ban on taxpayer funding of abortions in the District of Columbia and to allow a vote in the Senate on Planned Parenthood funding but he refused to cut any taxpayer disbursements to the abortion business.

“Nope, zero,” he told Boehner when the pro-life Speaker asked him how much he would cut from Planned Parenthood. Boehner asked Obama again, to which Obama responded, “Nope. Zero. John, this is it.”