• Wed. Feb 21st, 2024

Republican Infighting over House Speaker: Chip Roy and Michael Cloud Oppose Scalise, Rule Change Fails

Chip Roy and Michael Cloud Oppose Scalise, Rule Change Fails

U.S. Reps. Chip Roy (R-Austin) and Michael Cloud (R-Victoria) both vowed to vote against House Majority Leader Steve Scalise shortly after the Louisiana Republican won the party’s nomination to become the next House speaker.
Those votes, along with a handful of right-wing Republicans who said the same thing, could be enough to keep Scalise from getting the nod.
Chip Roy and Michael Cloud were two of three Texans who opposed former Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s leadership bid in January — contributing to a deadlock that required 15 votes — to gain more influence in the wings of their party. Republic of the United States of America Rep. Keith Self, R-McKinney, the other Texan on those votes, said on social media Wednesday that he voted against Scalise in a closed-door Republican conference before the upper house vote. He was vague about how he intended to vote during the vote.
Parliament adjourned Wednesday afternoon to vote for a new speaker. Republicans have not set a date for when they will vote next.
Scalise is running against House Judiciary Chairman and Freedom Caucus founder Jim Jordan of Ohio to replace McCarthy. McCarthy was ousted after a rebellion by eight far-right members, none of whom were Texans, who had several grievances with McCarthy. U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida led the push and said Wednesday he would support Scalise.
At a meeting of the House Republican Conference on Wednesday, members voted 113 votes in favour of Scalise as their party’s candidate for speaker of the upper chamber. Jordan received 99 votes. But whoever the Republicans nominate must win 217 votes in the House to get the nod.sca
Chip Roy called for a rule at the meeting that requires a speaker candidate to receive at least 217 votes at the Republican convention before he or she is expected to vote in the full House. The rule was intended to avoid the public complaints that coloured the race of the speaker in January and caused a brutal public exhibition of the disorganization of the party.
But despite widespread support for the rule, the conference voted Wednesday morning to enact the rule change.
Chip Roy seemed angry as he left the conference session. He declined to talk about the election as he left the room, but later posted on social media: “House Republicans should not have called for a vote at 1:30 p.m. and then called for a vote at 3 p.m. This is unacceptable. It’s a matter of convenience,” he posted. He promised to continue voting against Scalise.
After speaking with Scalise on Wednesday night, Chip Roy said the rule change failed despite support from an ideologically diverse group of members and did not make the party look more unified. He said he was particularly angry. He declined to say whether he would ultimately support Mr. Steve Scalise if he makes further changes to the rules, and said he did not want to make private discussions public. He said the conference was still negotiating the differences before the full House vote.
“There is a tendency in this city for the status quo to take shape and to overwhelm and suppress those who try to move beyond ideology,” Roy said.
Michael Cloud also said it would be a “bad, bad idea” to vote for the front-runner for the full House with “only half the support of the conference,” especially since needs to pass legislation to fund the government. He also made it clear that he thought so. It will take about a month to avoid a federal government shutdown.
“While I respect Steve Scalise, the inappropriate conduct of a rushed vote without the full support of the conference is deeply wrong, and I will not support the nomination without further discussion,” Crowder said in his letter.
The Texas delegation was split ahead of Wednesday’s meeting, with roughly equal numbers supporting the two major candidates. Members of the ultraconservative Freedom Caucus in the House of Representatives tend to be more favourable to Jordan, who also has the support of former President Donald Trump.
Meanwhile, Steve Scalise received support from McCarthy’s key allies. Scalise rose through the traditional ranks of the House Republican Conference, making him the most natural heir thanks to his extensive resume and strong fundraising operations.
Not everyone is supportive. Some members keep their votes secret until election day. Others say there is no problem with either candidate and are waiting to see who can garner more support and end all the badness.
“The most important thing to me is somebody who can get enough votes to be president,” said Houston Republican Rep. Wesley Hunter. “Whoever this person is, I don’t have a complete idea of who they are. He declined to reveal who voted for him at the party conference on Wednesday.
Rep. Troy Nehls, R-Richmond, also said he wants to make a bigger effort to unify the Republican Party behind one candidate. Niles, a major supporter of Jordan, pointed to Trump’s support for Ohioans. Niles had nominated Trump for president, but the nomination effort quickly collapsed.
“I think it’s difficult to do it now. I think there should be more dialogue,” said Nils. “I just want to make sure we don’t make the same mistake we did in January and embarrass ourselves because it’s a clown show.
Mr.Nehls did not specify who he would support in the House, suggesting that a third party candidate such as Trump or another McCarthy could unify the party.
Despite their differences, there is little appetite across party lines for a long speaker contest like the one in January. Unlike in January, when lawmakers who voted against Mr. McCarthy insisted on pushing through some House rules changes, several Texas Republicans said there were few policy differences between the two candidates.
He said no. Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Terrell) said he believes more lawmakers will switch to Mr. Scalise’s side once they know he has the support of a majority of Republicans.
“He’s getting elected,” Gooden said of Scalise. “We don’t see any disruption like we saw in January.

Read more

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *