House Majority Leader Steve Scalise is reportedly expected to drop out of his race for Speaker of the House.
On Wednesday, Scalise secured the GOP nomination for Speaker of the House with a 14-vote lead over Ohio Representative Jim Jordan. The House Majority Leader received 113 votes from House Republicans while Jordan received 99. Eight Republicans voted present.
Following the GOP’s nomination, Scalise reportedly met with individual House Republicans in an effort to whip support to secure the 217-vote threshold needed to assume Speakership.
Similar to former Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy’s historically contentious Speaker vote in January, a Scalise Speakership could be tanked if more than four House Republicans defect in support of Jordan or choose to vote “present.”
BREAKING: Newsmax reports that Rep. Steve Scalise will likely not be able to secure 217 votes and is expected to drop out of the race for Speaker of the House. pic.twitter.com/8nTDfER2Zq
— ALX 🎃 (@alx) October 12, 2023
Jordan is expected to take the lead in the Speaker race if Scalise drops out, though several other House Republicans including House Majority Whip Tom Emmer and Oklahoma Representative Kevin Hern are speculated to enter the race.
Several House Republicans, including Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene and South Carolina Representative Nancy Mace, have reiterated their support for a Jordan Speakership.
“I’m supporting Jim Jordan for Speaker,” Greene wrote in a Wednesday X post. “I’m not supporting Scalise. I like Steve Scalise, and as I said, I want him to beat cancer, and he should be focused on that.”
“I personally cannot in good conscience vote for someone who attended a white supremacist conference and compared himself to David Duke,” Mace said in reference to a 2014 New York Times report on Scalise.
I’m supporting Jim Jordan for Speaker. I’m not supporting Scalise. I like Steve Scalise, and as I said, I want him to beat cancer, and he should be focused on that.
What I do think is an unfair and quite frankly disgusting attack is members of our conference using..
🧵 THREAD pic.twitter.com/BkJ4r6DOZZ
— Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene🇺🇸 (@RepMTG) October 12, 2023
“I would be doing a disservice to the voters I represent in South Carolina if I were to do that,” Mace said.
Kentucky Representative Thomas Massie, who opposed last week’s ousting of McCarthy, also threw support behind a Jordan Speakership.
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) October 12, 2023
Scalise is expected to withdraw from the Speaker race as early as today.
Florida Representative Matt Gaetz spearheaded efforts to remove McCarthy after it was revealed the former Speaker had agreed to future Ukraine aid with House Democrats in a closed-door meeting. Gaetz was joined by fellow House Republicans Andy Biggs and Eli Crane of Arizona, Ken Buck of Colorado, Tim Burchett of Tennessee, Bob Good of Virginia, Nancy Mace of South Carolina, and Matt Rosendale of Montana.
After McCarthy was removed as House Speaker, North Carolina Representative Patrick McHenry assumed Speaker pro tempore until a vote could be held to select a new Speaker of the House.
McCarthy is the first Speaker of the House to be removed from the seat in United States history.