Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene proposed an amendment on Wednesday that would slash Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s budget to $1.
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A government shutdown is looming as Republican lawmakers struggle to agree on a funding plan.Meanwhile, a faction of hard-right GOP members moved to cut Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s salary.The proposal from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is likely to go nowhere.
As Congress scrambles to drum up a plan to avert a government shutdown, hard-right lawmakers curiously proposed a move to cut the salary of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to $1.
Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene proposed an amendment to slash Austin’s salary on the House floor on Wednesday, putting the proposal to a voice vote.
Several unidentified lawmakers voted “aye,” allowing the amendment to be placed in a defense appropriation bill. But the amendment is likely to go nowhere as the spending bill was already doomed to fail in the Senate. Adding Austin’s salary cut would make passing the bill that much more unlikely.
Greene’s proposal was supported by a group of unidentified Republicans — a move to possibly placate the handful of hard right conservatives, including Greene, who are currently holding up funding plans for the government.
On X, formerly Twitter, Greene said that Austin is “squarely” to blame for how the US’s withdrawal from Afghanistan unraveled.
During the exit in the summer of 2021, the Biden administration struggled to get the remaining military forces and Afghan allies out of the country, underestimating just how quickly Taliban forces would overthrow the Afghan government.
Greene set her crosshairs on Austin earlier in September, posting on X that he had “failed in his role as Secretary of Defense and has jeopardized the national security of the United States.”
A Pentagon spokesperson said in a statement to Insider that “it would be inappropriate to comment on pending legislation.”
Austin, a retired four-star Army general, is the first Black secretary of defense and was confirmed 93-2 by a Senate committee in 2021. The two votes against were from Republican senators Josh Hawley and Mike Lee.
Austin’s salary is $221,000, according to Military Times.
The government is just days away from a shutdown that would put thousands of federal employees temporarily out of work. As a consequence, SNAP benefits, social security payments, and even air travel could be at risk.
On September 21, several hard-right Republicans continued to stifle progress on a spending agenda after rejecting a defense bill that typically receives bipartisan support.
“This is a whole new concept of individuals who just want to burn the whole place down,” House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said after Thursday’s vote. “It doesn’t work.”
A spokesperson for Greene did not respond to a request for comment.