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U.S. House Republicans pick Tom Emmer as new nominee for speaker

Published : 25 Oct 2023, 00:32

  DF News Desk
This is an official photo of U.S. House Majority Whip Tom Emmer, who was nominated by House Republicans as their speaker candidate on Oct. 24, 2023. Photo: Legal Talk Network via Xinhua.

U.S. House Republicans on Tuesday chose House Majority Whip Tom Emmer as their new nominee for speaker, after dropping Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan following three failed votes last week, reported Xinhua.

In a closed door vote, Emmer emerged as the Republican conference's nominee for House speaker, which took five rounds of votes to get to consensus.

In a roll vote afterwards, however, over 20 holdouts voted against the speaker designee, indicating intraparty resistance over his speakership.

With a slim 221-212 Republican majority in the chamber, Emmer can lose no more than four Republican votes to reach the majority threshold and become speaker, assuming all Democrats vote for their candidate, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries.

The latest development came after House Republicans dropped Jordan, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, as the Republican nominee for speaker on Friday, after he failed to garner enough support from his own party in three rounds of full-chamber voting. Moderates had doubts about a hardline conservative House speaker.

After Jordan's failed attempts, several House Republicans announced they would run for House speaker, including Emmer, Kevin Hern, chairman of the Republican Study Committee, Mike Johnson, vice chairman of the House Republican conference, and Byron Donalds, an ally of former President Donald Trump.

Republican Rep. Jim Banks told CNN that the speaker designee is not conservative enough, noting that there are dozens of members that won't vote for him at this point.

The House has been leaderless for three weeks, after Kevin McCarthy was unprecedentedly removed from his position on Oct. 3, in a move initiated by a conservative member of his own party. Eight Republicans voted with Democrats in the historical ouster.

The stalemate has prompted some lawmakers to push for the empowerment of Patrick McHenry, the temporary speaker, in the hope that he can oversee the passage of urgently needed legislation until House Republicans can coalesce and elect a new leader.