Legislative Update: House Republicans Struggle to Find a New Leader

This week, House Republicans continued to struggle to identify and advance a new Speaker of the House following the surprising ouster of the former House Speaker last week. Since that time no clear contender has emerged after disagreement within the House Republican conference persisted this week. 

House Republicans Continue Leadership Deliberations

Last week a group of House Republicans successfully ousted former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) from this leadership position. Since that time, Representative Patrick McHenry (R-NC) has been serving on an acting basis in this role until the House formally elects a new Speaker. Following this surprising turn of events, Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) and House Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan (R-OH) announced that they would both seek the support of the House Republican caucus to serve as the next Speaker. Earlier this week, House Republicans hosted a candidate forum for both Scalise and Jordan to make their case to colleagues regarding their respective candidacies. 

Following this forum, House Republicans reconvened to conduct an informal internal vote for a new Speaker before bringing this candidate to the full House for formal consideration. This effort was intended to facilitate broader consensus regarding a candidate before calling the House back into session and beginning the formal process of electing a new Speaker. Majority Leader Scalise narrowly won this internal House Republican caucus vote by a margin of 113-99 — making him the new Republican nominee to be the next Speaker of the House. However, with a slim margin of control in the chamber and a reluctance to rely on support from House Democrats, Scalise needed to secure at least 217 of the 221 House Republican members to formally become Speaker. 

Following this informal vote on Wednesday, Scalise continued to struggle to secure the support needed within his own party to move forward with a formal vote for Speaker. House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) is now the leading candidate for this leadership position. However, it remains unclear whether and how Jordan will be able to secure the votes necessary to be elected to this role. A formal vote for Speaker has not yet been scheduled at the time of this writing. Advance CTE is monitoring this process closely and will continue to provide analysis regarding potential implications regarding federal funding and other issues of importance for the Career Technical Education (CTE) community.  

Steve Voytek, Policy Advisor 

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