Marjorie Taylor Greene and other Republicans are taking advantage of a 19th-century House rule to try to lower Biden officials' salaries to $1

Marjorie Taylor Greene
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene participates in a House Oversight Committee hearing titled "The Basis for an Impeachment Inquiry of President Joseph R. Biden, Jr." on Capitol Hill September 28, 2023, in Washington, DC.Drew Angerer/Getty Images
  • In 1876, the House passed the Holman Rule for the very first time.

  • After centuries of tweaks, the rule allows legislators to reduce the pay of federal employees.

  • The rule's been utilized 36 times this year by House Republicans.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and House Republicans are trying to bring an obscure House rule from the 19th century back in vogue.

Since the beginning of the congressional term in January, House Republicans have taken advantage of the "Holman Rule" and introduced 36 separate amendments to appropriations bills in an attempt to reduce the salaries of select Biden Administration officials and federal employees to just $1.

Originated by Rep. William S Holman in 1876, the rule originally only allowed members of the House to add amendments to pieces of appropriations legislation reducing the salary of certain officials. Over a century later, the rule has been tweaked to allow legislators to axe government programs in a similarly roundabout fashion.

In recent months, Greene's been the lead sponsor of four of the amendments that sought to cut the pay of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and the CEO of the US Agency for Global Media, Amanda Bennett.

"Pothole Pete staged fake bike rides to the White House and used private planes funded by taxpayers to receive awards for the way certain people have sex," Greene posted to X, referring to the transportation secretary's travel to receive an award from a Canadian LGBTQ organization.

Of Greene's amendments, a majority in the House ultimately approved three. Lawmakers in the chamber have agreed on similar amendments regarding the paychecks for six other officials including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and the director of the Department of Defense's Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Cyrus Salazar.

While there's virtually zero possibility that any of the amendments will make it into the final agreed-upon appropriations bills following revisions from the Senate, House Republicans have continued to use the Holman Rule to win brownie points with their base.

The Holman Rule hasn't always been included in rules packages since its introduction in 1876 — the rule has been removed and re-added to the House rule book on numerous occasions.

The rule was most recently reinstated in January 2022, after the GOP very narrowly gained control of the House of Representatives, when Rep. Kevin McCarthy ultimately conceded to his holdouts and reinstated the Holman Rule for the 118th Congress.

The 115th Congress also briefly instituted the Holman Rule, though the congressional body never passed a single amendment using it.

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