U.S. House Republicans Drop Jim Jordan as House Speaker Nominee after Three Failed Votes

U.S. Right-wing Republican Jim Jordan (C), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, leaves after House Republicans voted in a secret ballot against him continuing as the party's nominee for speaker in a closed-door session in Washington, D.C., the United States, on Oct. 20, 2023. Photo by Aaron Schwartz/Xinhua

WASHINGTON -- U.S. House Republicans on Friday dropped right-wing figure Jim Jordan, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, as the Republican nominee for House speaker, after he failed to garner enough support from his own party in three rounds of full-chamber voting.

In a closed-door session Friday afternoon, House Republicans voted in a secret ballot against Jordan continuing as their party's nominee for speaker, roughly a week after he was nominated.

Earlier in the day, Jordan lost the third vote in his bid for House speaker, as Republican opposition grows amid continuing chaos.

The Ohio Republican, 59, lost 25 votes from fellow Republicans, three more than in the second round of voting and five more than in the first round, indicating moderates' growing doubts about a hardline conservative House speaker.

With a slim 221-212 Republican majority in the chamber, Jordan could only afford to lose a few votes from Republicans in order to reach the majority threshold and win the gavel, considering that all Democrats voted for House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries.

House Majority Leader Steve Scalise said they were going to "come back and start over" on Monday.

Several House Republicans have announced they would run for House speaker, including Jack Bergman from Michigan and Kevin Hern from Oklahoma.

The House has been leaderless for over two 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 House can't move forward on its legislative process until a speaker is chosen, and lawmakers need to pass a spending bill before government funding runs out in mid-November. The House is also under pressure to take action amid the escalating Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

But the latest chaos shows that moderates and right-wing conservatives within the Republican Party are far from reaching an agreement on the way forward.

The stalemate has prompted some lawmakers to push for the empowerment of Speaker Pro Tempore Patrick McHenry, in hope that he can oversee the passage of urgently needed legislation until House Republicans can coalesce and elect a new leader. In the third vote, several Republican defections voted for McHenry.

Related Articles