The speaker has resisted a get-tough management approach in the past. But the shackles are off now.
Voting against John Boehner’s bid for a third term as speaker has been very bad for Rep. Richard Nugent.
The speaker’s friends and aides thought the Florida Republican was a trustworthy ally. Nugent had privately signaled he would vote for the Ohio Republican to remain the GOP leader.
Then he cast a ballot for his fellow Florida Rep. Daniel Webster.
Now Nugent is an outsider.
Campaign checks from corporate political action committees have all but dried up. GOP leaders have prohibited him from traveling on congressional trips to Iraq and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. Bills that Nugent has written have been snatched away and doled out to other members of the House Republican Conference, including one dealing with mental health. And Boehner kicked him — and Webster — off the influential Rules Committee.
“It’s been quite a few things,” Nugent, a second-term congressman and former county sheriff, said in a recent interview, referring to the retribution he’s been subject to. Asked whether he would like to make amends, he said, “It’s all up to them.”