Republican Jim Jordan takes next step after losing first vote for US House Speaker

 – Gudstory

Republican Jim Jordan takes next step after losing first vote for US House Speaker – Gudstory

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The Ohio lawmaker, backed by former President Donald Trump, won 200 votes, short of the 217 needed to win the post, as 20 of his fellow Republicans voted against him. All 212 Democrats voted for their leader, Hakeem Jeffries.

The defeat means the House remains leaderless for now, as it has been since a handful of Republican hard-liners ousted Kevin McCarthy as speaker two weeks ago. This has left Congress unable to respond to the wars in the Middle East and Ukraine, with just a month left before the US government faces the deadline for another partial shutdown.

It’s unclear how many of Jordan’s Republican rivals will hold firm in subsequent votes. McCarthy never received fewer than 200 votes in 15 rounds over four days in January.

If Jordan wins, a conservative who has spent years battling leaders of his own party could move into one of the most powerful jobs in Washington, making him second in line to the presidency after the vice president. will come.

Republican Representative Elise Stefanik, in nominating Jordan for Speaker of the House, said, “He is a patriot, an America First warrior who wins the toughest battles.”

The Republicans did not nominate another candidate, but that did not stop their opponents from voting for someone else. Many of them are liberals who represent politically competitive districts.

Seven Republicans voted for No. 2 House Republican Steve Scalise, whose own bid for speaker failed last week, and six voted for McCarthy. Three Republicans voted for Lee Zeldin, who retired from Congress in January, and Republican Representatives Tom Cole, Tom Emmer, Thomas Massie and Mike Garcia received one vote each.

McCarthy and Scalise both voted for Jordan.

Some of Jordan’s opponents have objected to the high-pressure tactics used by the conservatives to sway them. “I will not be pressured or intimidated,” said Representative Mario Diaz-Balart, who voted for Scalise.

Republicans control the House by a slim margin of 221-212, giving them little margin for error on such divisive votes.

After the vote, Jordan could be seen in the House talking to lawmakers who voted against him.

If Jordan doesn’t get the endorsement, new Republican challengers could emerge, including Patrick McHenry, who is temporarily filling the speaker’s chair, and Tom Emmer, the No. 3 House Republican.

Jordan, founder of the hard-right House Freedom Caucus, has been seen as a divisive force on Capitol Hill for much of his career, clashing with Republicans and Democrats alike.

His supporters say he will be an effective advocate for spending cuts and other Republican priorities in negotiations with Democratic President Joe Biden and the Senate, which is also controlled by Democrats.

I am following Trump’s orders.

Democrats have objected to Jordan’s candidacy and have portrayed him as an extremist who would take orders from former President Donald Trump.

Democratic Representative Pete Aguilar said in the House that Jordan’s election would show enemies of the United States that “those who seek to undermine democracy are rewarded with positions of immense power. We’re talking about that person Who has spent his entire career trying to hold our country back.”

Jefferies has suggested a bipartisan compromise that could give the speaker pro tempore more authority, according to a Democrat who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Jordan comes to the job with a completely different perspective from other leaders in Congress, who typically exert influence by raising money and keeping their party together.

A fixture on conservative media outlets, Jordan amplified Trump’s false claims of election fraud in 2020. As chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, he is helping lead the impeachment inquiry into Biden, which Democrats say is baseless.

He helped establish the House Freedom Caucus, which was labeled a “legislative terrorist” by then-Speaker John Boehner, before members of that group pressured him to retire. Jordan was the architect of government shutdowns in 2013 and 2018.

Jordan had a more productive relationship with McCarthy, who was ousted by a small group of Republican insurgents.

Republicans nominated Scalise last week to replace McCarthy, but he dropped his bid after being unable to consolidate support — a development for which some Republicans blame Jordan and his supporters.

Before entering politics, Jordan served as the wrestling coach at Ohio State University. In 2018, former students accused him of turning a blind eye to sexual abuse of college wrestlers by the wrestling team doctor. He denied those allegations and the university’s investigation found no substantial evidence that he knew about the abuse.

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Updated: October 18, 2023, 01:07 am IST


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