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Monday, May 20, 2024

Nine Republicans Formally Vie for Speakership, Some Gearing Up for Future Rounds

'I’m standing down for this round...'

(Luis CornelioHeadline USA) Nine Republican leaders have formally declared their intention to vie for the House speaker position, setting the stage for a dramatic showdown, Politico reported on Sunday. 

According to the report, the list of contenders includes prominent names such as Majority Whip Tom Emmer, R-Minn, and Vice Chair Mike Johnson, R-La. Additionally, Rank and file Rep. Jack Bergman, R-Mich., and House GOP Policy Chair Gary Palmer, R-Ala., have also thrown their hats into the ring. 

The remaining five contenders are RSC Chair Kevin Hern, R-Okla.; Reps. Byron Donalds, R-Fla.; Austin Scott, R-Ga.; Pete Sessions, R-Texas; and Dan Meuser R-Pa. 

The lineup marks the most crowded field since the departure of former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., on Oct. 3. The path to victory entails securing 217 votes. However, the nine Republicans will first persuade their colleagues in a candidate forum on Monday. 

Then on Tuesday, Republicans will vote until only two candidates remain. The candidate who manages to secure a majority will become the third speaker designee, according to Politico.

House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La., and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, both failed to gain the needed votes to clinch the speakership and ultimately withdrew their candidacies.  

Emmer’s prominence in the new line-up comes after he was approached amid McCarthy’s ousting. However, former President Donald Trump reportedly voiced his opposition to Emmer’s bid in private discussions, Politico reported last week. 

Trump’s alleged reservations were echoed by American First conservatives Boris Epshteyn and Caroline Wren during a segment of Steve Bannon’s WarRoom podcast on Friday. “Tom Emmer is Nancy Pelosi in a Suit,” the podcast’s caption on Twitter read. 

Wren criticized Emmer’s track record, stating “Tom Emmer is awful. He’s been the whip behind every single bad deal in Congress for the last two years that Kevin McCarthy negotiated, was Tom Emmer whipping for it.” 

Some members are already looking ahead to the next cycle, with Budget Chair Jodey Arrington, R-Texas, indicating his intent to run in the next round. “I’m standing down for this round,” Arrington told Politico. “Hope we get there.” 

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