House votes against Jim Jordan in 3rd vote for Speakership

October 20, 2023

The House of Representatives on Friday voted 235-194 against Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) for Speaker of the House.

It was the third round of voting in four days. 

The vote took place after a proposal to give more powers to Speaker Pro Tempore Patrick McHenry (R-NC) for a limited time period, which Jordan had backed in order to give himself more time to build GOP support for himself, was scrapped amid party opposition to the plan. 

Meanwhile, the number of House Republicans opposed to approving Jordon for the lower chamber’s leading position has reportedly only grown since the first round of voting—in part because of a hardball pressure campaign Jordan undertook, as well as violent threats that lawmakers and their families have been subjected to by random people who apparently support Jordan. 

Just hours before the vote on Friday Jordan pressed his case to continue running for Speaker, despite two previous losses, saying Congress needs to “get to work for the American people.”

However, when he was asked by a reporter at his news conference if he had a path to securing the 217 votes he’d need from House Republicans—just four fewer than are in the entire caucus—Jordan responded, “Look, there’s been multiple rounds of votes for Speaker before—we all know that. I just know that we need to get a Speaker as soon as possible so we can get to work for the American people. “ 

On Friday, 25 Republicans voted for other GOP Reps.—McHenry, McCarthy, Byron Donalds of New York, Tom Emmer of Minnesota, Steve Scalise of Louisiana, Mike Garcia of California, Bruce Westerman of Arkansas, and former Rep. Lee Zeldin of New York. Twenty Republicans had voted for other people on Tuesday and 22 voted for others on Wednesday. 

Ousted Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) nominated Jordan on Friday, saying, “Jim Jordan is an effective legislator.” It’s been noted that Jordan has not passed a single bill into law during his tenure in Congress, and McCarthy’s speech received both applause and heckles from the chamber floor.

There were 429 members of the House present for the vote, meaning Jordan needed to secure 215 votes on the Republican side of the chamber. He’d received 200 on Tuesday and 199 on Wednesday.

All 210 Democrats present in chamber on Friday voted en mass for House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), as they did on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Rep. Katherine Clark (D-MA) nominated Jeffries on Friday, saying while referring to the total number of Democrats who’d voted Tuesday and Wednesday, “The unanimous call of 212 House Democrats has been answered by our nominee for Speaker” while “the majority’s nominee is disconnected from the American people and their values.” 

Former President Trump has endorsed Jordan, who was deeply involved in the attempt to overturn President Biden’s 2020 election victory, according to the House Select Committee that investigated the deadly January 6, 2021 insurrection on the U.S. Capitol. To this day, Jordan refuses to admit that Biden won the 2020 election.

Further, Jordan has a reputation for being a partisan firebrand who currently chairs not just the House Judiciary Committee but also the House Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government, which he helped create to investigate what he’s called “this weaponization of the DOJ against the American people.”

House Republicans have been under pressure to move quickly to choose a new leader from members of their own party in the Senate amid a looming deadline to pass a federal budget for fiscal year 2024 and avoid a government shutdown in mid-November, as well as calls to approve appropriations for additional military aid to Israel and Ukraine.

Other Republican lawmakers on Thursday morning were reportedly weighing their own runs for Speaker, should Jordan withdraw his name, including Reps. Jodey Arrington of Texas, Jack Bergman of Michigan and Mike Johnson of Louisiana.

However, it’s unclear whether any of these lawmakers could obtain the needed 217 votes to secure the Speakership, either. 

House Republicans were set to enter into another closed-door meeting at 1pm ET Friday following the vote.

During his news conference Friday morning, Jordan said, “Our plan this weekend is to get a Speaker elected to the House of Representatives as soon as possible so we can help the American people.” 

Reporters have noted that numerous lawmakers were in casual clothes during the vote Friday, suggesting, perhaps, that they had no intention of staying in Washington this weekend. Further, CNN reported that a lot of GOP members were not happy about Jordan’s suggestion to keep them in all weekend to vote on more ballots, and doing so might only drive up his Republican opposition.

PHOTO: House Speaker vote Friday

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