Republicans drop Jim Jordan as House speaker nominee: Live updates

WASHINGTON – House Republicans dropped Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, as their speaker nominee Friday, throwing the House into even more chaos and turmoil as GOP lawmakers must scramble to find a new candidate to unite behind. 

Following three failed speaker elections, House Republicans held an internal secret ballot vote to decide whether Jordan should remain as the conference’s nominee. Jordan was ultimately dropped as the nominee by a vote of 112-86. 

House Republicans will head home for the weekend and return to Washington to hold a candidate forum on Monday evening to hear from prospective speakers. Following the forum, they will hold another internal vote to determine a nominee on Tuesday.

A mad dash for the top job has begun within the House Republican conference, with some members immediately declaring their candidacy leaving the meeting after Jordan’s exit and other lawmakers saying they will seriously consider running over the weekend. 

The House will remain speakerless over the weekend and into Monday, leaving the lower chamber in a state of paralysis.

Follow along for the latest updates from USA TODAY on the speaker fight.

Acting Speaker Patrick McHenry told reporters that after a candidate forum and an internal vote to select a nominee, the “goal” is to hold a speaker election on the House floor next Tuesday.

When lawmakers return next Monday evening, House Republicans will hold another candidate forum to hear from prospective speakers ahead of a vote on Tuesday to select a nominee.

Ken Tran

With no clear successor to Jordan as the speaker nominee, a mad dash has begun within the House Republican conference for the top job.

Reps. Kevin Hern R-Okla., and Austin Scott, R-Ga., say they will run.

Rep. Jodey Arrington, R-Texas, chair of the House Budget Committee said he will seriously consider running for speaker.

Ken Tran

Rep. Kevin Hern, R-Okla., who previously considered a run for speaker, told reporters he will now launch a bid following Jordan’s loss.

Hern is chair of the Republican Study Committee, the largest caucus of House Republicans.

Ken Tran

Jordan is no longer the GOP’s speaker nominee.

The Ohio Republican lost an internal secret ballot vote on whether to keep him as the conference’s nominee, Rep. Steve Womack, R-Ark., told reporters.

Jordan lost an internal secret ballot vote to determine whether he should remain as the nominee by a vote of 112-86, according to Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky.

According to Womack, lawmakers are heading home for the weekend.

The House will return into session next Monday at 6:30 p.m.

Candidates have until noon on Sunday to declare their intentions to run for speaker.

− Ken Tran

The internal vote on whether to keep Jordan as the GOP speaker nominee is a secret ballot vote according to Rep. Dan Meuser, R-Pa.

The options, he said, were to either vote yes, no or present.

Ken Tran

Lawmakers are now leaving the closed-door meeting saying that voting is ongoing on whether Republicans should keep Jordan as their nominee.

Ken Tran

The group of House Republicans who ousted McCarthy sent a letter to the House GOP conference offering to face consequences for removing McCarthy in exchange for putting Jordan in the speaker’s chair.

But one of the GOP lawmakers who voted to oust McCarthy is also a Jordan holdout: Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo.

The letter originally included Buck but after the Colorado Republican noticed his signature, the letter removed Buck’s name.

Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., one of the lawmakers who voted to remove McCarthy said it was “some miscommunication I guess.”− Ken Tran

Following Jordan’s third defeat, House Republicans are huddling behind closed doors at 1 p.m. Friday.

−Ken Tran

Speaking on the Capitol steps, five of the eight GOP lawmakers who voted to oust McCarthy said the eight are offering to be punished by the rest of the House GOP conference if it would placate Jordan’s holdouts.

Reps Eli Crane, R-Ariz., Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., Bob Good, R-Va., Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., and Nancy Mace, R-S.C., said they would accept any consequences for voting to remove McCarthy.

Those consequences could include removal of committee assignments, censures and/or removal from conference.

Ken Tran

Jordan loses third vote for House speaker

Jordan lost the third speaker vote, failing to garner enough support behind him and only losing more support among House Republicans.

Like with the second ballot, his detractors only grew in numbers − this time to 25 − making Jordan’s path to the speakership more uncertain.

It is unclear if a fourth vote will be held and whether lawmakers will stay in session through the weekend.

– Ken Tran

Here are the 25 GOP lawmakers who voted against Jordan

Some 25 GOP lawmakers voted against Jordan as speaker. Three of those votes against Jordan are new holdouts who previously supported the Ohio Republican. The 25 are:

  • Rep. Don Bacon, R-Neb.
  • Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Fla.
  • Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo.
  • Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer, R-Ore.
  • Rep. Anthony D’Esposito, R-N.Y.
  • Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla.
  • Rep. Jake Ellzey, R-Texas
  • Rep. Drew Ferguson, R-Ga.
  • Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa.
  • Rep. Andrew Garbarino, R-N.Y.
  • Rep. Carlos Gimenez, R-Fla.
  • Rep. Tony Gonzales, R-Texas
  • Rep. Kay Granger, R-Fla.
  • Rep. John James, R-Mich.
  • Rep. Tom Kean, R-N.J.
  • Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa.
  • Rep. Jen Kiggans, R-Va.
  • Rep. Nick LaLota, R-N.Y.
  • Rep. Mike Lawler, R-N.Y.
  • Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa
  • Rep. Marc Molinaro, R-N.Y.
  • Rep. John Rutherford, R-Fla.
  • Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho
  • Rep. Pete Stauber, R-Minn.
  • Rep. Steve Womack, R-Ark.

– Ken Tran

Who are the new GOP lawmakers who flipped against Jordan?

Jordan lost even more support on the third ballot, with three new lawmakers opting to support another candidate after initially voting for him before. They are:

  • Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa.
  • Rep. Tom Kean, R-N.J.
  • Rep. Marc Molinaro, R-N.Y.

– Ken Tran

Jordan on track to lose third vote

The House vote is ongoing, but Jordan is on track to lose a third time.

He has lost 25 votes so far, which is more than the 22 votes he lost in the second vote and 20 votes he lost in the first vote.

− Candy Woodall

Clark nominates Jeffries for speaker

House Minority Whip Rep. Katherine Clark, D-Mass., nominated Jeffries for the speakership on behalf of House Democrats. He’s earned the most votes this week, but not enough to clinch the win.

Clark took aim at Jordan’s legislative record, saying the Ohio Republican supports cutting Social Security and Medicare and noting the Ohio Republican has never voted for a farm bill.

Jordan, she added, is a “true threat to our democracy and our Constitution,” for his vote against certifying Biden’s victory in the 2020 election.

− Ken Tran

In another historic moment in the House, ousted former Speaker Kevin McCarthy nominated Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, as the representative to succeed him.

“Being the speaker is not an easy job, but especially in this conference,” McCarthy said to a few laughs and light applause.

But Jordan is the representative for the job, he said.

“Jim Jordan is a leader, a listener and a fighter,” McCarthy said.

−Candy Woodall

McCarthy sought to defend the Jordan from Democratic arguments that the Ohio Republican has never passed one of his own bills with his name attached to it.

The former speaker called Jordan an “effective legislator” and “selfless,” drawing laughter and jeers from Democrats. 

McCarthy also took aim at House Democrats, singling out Rep. Pete Aguilar, D-Calif., for passing only one bill with his name on it, garnering applause from Republicans.

But in a display of Jordan’s uphill battle towards becoming speaker, several GOP lawmakers, including Jordan’s holdouts, remained seated even as the majority of the conference gave a standing ovation for McCarthy.

− Ken Tran

House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries unloaded on the “national nightmare” he says his colleagues across the aisle have created in 17 days without a House speaker.

The GOP nominee who has lost the vote twice, Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan, is a threat to the nation, according to Jeffries.

“Jim Jordan is a clear and present danger to our democracy,” Jeffries said to reporters Friday morning at the Capitol.

The Democratic leader then rattled off his list of reasons, saying Jordan is a 2020 election denier and “the poster child for MAGA extremism,” who wants an abortion ban and to cut Social Security and Medicare.

−Candy Woodall

Jordan declines to say whether 2020 election was stolen

Jordan, when asked whether he thought the 2020 election was stolen, gave a non-committal answer and said he thought “there were all kinds of problems with the 2020 election.”

One of Jordan’s holdouts, Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., is refusing to support the Ohio Republican for speaker until he acknowledges former President Donald Trump lost in 2020.

– Ken Tran

House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries said he hasn’t met with acting speaker Patrick McHenry, but he and other Democratic leaders are open to the idea of empowering him to do the House’s business.

“All options are on the table to get the House back open,” Jeffries said, responding to a question about whether his caucus would support a plan to empower a speaker pro tempore.

McHenry has limited powers as interim speaker. It would take a majority of the House and some Democratic votes to give him expanded powers to do things like passing an aid package to Israel or negotiating to avoid a shutdown.

Democratic Whip Katherine Clark said bipartisanship is the only path forward.

“Come together,” she said to Republicans. “You are weakening this country, you are weakening this institution.”

−Candy Woodall

From his bully pulpit as chair of the powerful House Judiciary Committee, which has spent most of its time this session trying to impeach Biden, Jordan held a press conference at 8 a.m. to try and attract more support for his speaker bid.

Jordan said he was not backing down in his pursuit of the speakership, even as his opposition threatens to grow.

“We can’t open the House without a speaker.”

−Candy Woodall and Ken Tran

Crenshaw says ‘votes aren’t changing’ for Jordan

Leaving a meeting held by the Texas GOP delegation, Rep. Dan Crenshaw, R-Texas, told reporters the “vote’s aren’t changing” for Jordan ahead of a third speaker election that Jordan is expected to lose.

Whether Jordan should drop out, Crenshaw said, is ultimately the Ohio Republican’s decision, but there’s a “growing sense” that House Republicans will have to find a new candidate to rally behind “quite soon.”

– Ken Tran

GOP lawmaker is slightly more optimistic about electing a new speaker… slightly

Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., told reporters last week he put the odds of the House electing a new speaker by last Friday at 2%.

This time around, with Jordan as the speaker nominee, he’s feeling a little more optimistic about electing a new speaker by the end of the day: he’s putting the odds at 30%.

“It still isn’t 50%,” Massie quipped.

– Ken Tran

Jordan and his allies have hinted on social media and during a press conference Friday that the House will not take the weekend off if there’s no speaker.

The House Judiciary chair said during his news conference today he hopes the lower chamber will elect a new speaker “this weekend,” suggesting there could be more elections to come.

− Ken Tran

The House has been without a speaker since Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., was removed from the position more than two weeks ago.

In a move led by conservative firebrand Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., eight Republicans were joined by House Democrats in a vote to oust him. Gaetz and a handful of hardliners were angry with McCarthy for striking a bipartisan compromise to avoid a government shutdown.

McCarthy’s nine-month speakership started in turmoil, outlasting 15 historic rounds of voting to be elected in January. To get the gavel, he made several concessions, including a rule allowing any one member to call for the vote to remove McCarthy.

Gaetz used that rule to remove McCarthy from the top position in the House with no viable plan to replace him.

−Candy Woodall

Without a speaker, the House has been in a state of paralysis, unable to pass any legislation. Lawmakers in the lower chamber can’t take up crucial funding to avoid a government shutdown or approve aid to Israel as the war with Hamas continues.

Republicans appeared close to finally getting the House moving again Wednesday morning, as they considered temporarily empowering Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., as an interim speaker. But those plans fell through amidst wide-ranging disagreements within the GOP conference. 

Jordan is expected to lose his third speaker election, and it is unclear whether he will drop out of the race. 

−Ken Tran

Biden’s request for foreign aid to Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan and the U.S.-Mexico border, which totals almost $100 billion, is unable to pass the House without a speaker.

The House, which is in its 17th day without a speaker, has been unable to take any legislative action. There is a sense of urgency to elect a new speaker among lawmakers so the House can pass a foreign aid package for Israel, a key U.S. ally, but House Republicans have been unable to coalesce behind a speaker despite the calls for decisive action.

Ken Tran

House Republicans huddled behind closed doors for over three hours to discuss a resolution from Rep. Dave Joyce, R-Ohio, that would have temporarily empowered McHenry as an interim speaker to get the House moving again.

The move would have allowed Jordan to continue building support for his speakership bid on the sidelines while the House works on crucial legislation to avert a government shutdown and address the Israel-Hamas war.

But the plans ultimately fell through as it became apparent a sizable number of members opposed the path. Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind., who was critical of the resolution, estimated half of House Republicans were against empowering McHenry.

– Ken Tran

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