GOP Picks Yet Another Nominee for House Speaker

This time it's Mike Johnson
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 24, 2023 6:57 PM CDT
Updated Oct 25, 2023 12:08 AM CDT
House GOP Prepares to Vote Again
Rep. Mike Johnson, vice chair of the House GOP Conference, talks to reporters as he arrives at the Republican caucus meeting at the Capitol, Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023.   (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)
UPDATE Oct 25, 2023 12:08 AM CDT

Here we go again: House Republicans on Tuesday night chose their fourth nominee for Speaker of the House since Kevin McCarthy was ousted. Rep. Mike Johnson of Louisiana won the majority behind closed doors, and was later surrounded by supportive colleagues at a press conference who chanted, "Mike! Mike! Mike!" Johnson was nominated just hours after the third nominee, Rep. Tom Emmer, was nominated and then abruptly withdrew. A House floor vote will be held Wednesday, the AP reports. In what CBS News calls a "potential sign of trouble for Johnson," McCarthy, who was not even a declared candidate for speaker, got 43 votes Tuesday night—more than Johnson's actual opponent, Rep. Byron Donalds, who got 29.

Oct 24, 2023 6:57 PM CDT

House Republicans prepared for yet another vote on selecting a House speaker nominee Tuesday evening after Rep. Tom Emmer abandoned his bid, and Rep. Mike Johnson appeared to have some momentum. The Louisiana lawmaker, who lost 97-117 to Emmer in the vote that made Emmer the nominee earlier Tuesday, was endorsed by Rep. Kevin Hern after Hern dropped out of the race, the Hill reports. "We've got to get a speaker," Hern said, describing Johnson as "a great individual" who "will be a great leader for our conference." "We need somebody that's bigger than an individual and he's the guy," Hern said.

Other candidates in the closed-door conference vote include Reps. Byron Donalds, Chuck Fleischmann, Mark Green, and Roger Williams, the Washington Post reports. Sources tell NBC News that Rep. Kevin McCarthy, who was ousted as speaker three weeks ago, has proposed a plan that would reinstate him as speaker with Rep. Jim Jordan, who dropped his bid after losing three rounds of voting in the House last week, as assistant speaker. NBC says that when asked why the plan is being floated now, one GOP lawmaker said, "We're desperate."

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Emmer, the House majority whip, saw his bid fall apart Tuesday afternoon after dozens of conservative lawmakers withheld their support and Donald Trump slammed him in a Truth Social post, saying voting for a "RINO" would be a "tragic mistake." Sources tell the Post that Emmer stormed out of a conference meeting, saying he knows how to count votes and he didn't have the 217 needed to be elected speaker. (More speaker of the House stories.)

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