Don Wolfensberger at The Hill:

From eighth grade civics through college government courses to nearly three decades each of working in the House and then the think tank world, I mistakenly believed that Speakers of the U.S. House of Representatives could vote only to break a tie. My longstanding misunderstanding was shattered last month when, on April 12, Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) voted to make, not break, a tie, thereby defeating a major amendment offered to the FISA authorization, 212-212. (Tie votes defeat a measure or amendment.) That development prompted me to look at other roll call votes in recent times. I was startled to discover that Speaker Johnson is a frequent voter. For instance, of the 88 roll call votes cast from March 12 through May 1, 2024, Speaker Johnson voted 59 times (67 percent), and refrained from voting on 29 occasions (33 percent). Most of the outcomes were nowhere near being a tie. I am told by a knowledgeable source that Speaker Johnson’s predecessor, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), also voted often as Speaker in this Congress.