The House of Representatives Finally Elects a New Speaker After 22 Days Without One

AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

Some 22 days after former Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthey’s historic ouster, the House of Representatives has a new leader.

Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA) was voted speaker of the House less than 24 hours after winning the Republican nomination. His win ends a weeks-long stalemate in which the House GOP nominated three other candidates who failed to secure enough support.

The Speaker Saga Ends

Rep. Johnson became the fifty-sixth speaker of the House and the first from Louisiana when he was elected to the post by a 220 to 209 vote margin over House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) on Wednesday. He enjoyed unanimous support from the GOP conference, though one Republican – Rep. Derrick Van Orden – was absent from the vote. He got the House back to work immediately, adopting a resolution to “stand by Israel.”

The fourth-term congressman had a quick rise to the speakership. He threw his hat into the ring late Tuesday after House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-MN) dropped out just hours after securing the GOP nomination. 

Emmer’s nom came after House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) faced three failed floor votes. Jordan’s run, meanwhile, followed the exit of House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA). He removed himself from consideration less than 36 hours after winning the GOP nomination due to a lack of support.

The saga started earlier this month when the House voted 216 to 210 to remove McCarthy from the role after Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) acted to force a vote on a motion to vacate. A total of eight Republicans – Gaetz, Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona, Rep. Ken Buck of Colorado, Rep. Tim Burchett of Tennessee, Rep. Eli Crane of Arizona, Rep. Bob Good of Virginia, Rep. Nancy Mace of South Carolina, and Rep. Matt Rosendale of Montana – joined 208 Democrats to oust McCarthy.

‘I Don’t Respect Any of You’

Three weeks without a speaker of the House meant three weeks of no business getting done on Capitol Hill. Megyn admitted that she hasn’t time focusing on the ongoing drama because she has lost interest and respect. “I haven’t been covering this much at all because I couldn’t give a sh-t,” she concluded. “I don’t respect any of [them].”