House Republicans are getting ready to vote for a speaker candidate for a third time after their past two nominees to lead the chamber dropped out of the race.
GOP lawmakers are gathering behind closed doors at 9 a.m. on Tuesday for an election via anonymous secret ballot.
There are nine Republicans jostling for the speakership right now: Majority Whip Tom Emmer, R-Minn.; GOP Conference Vice Chair Mike Johnson, R-La.; GOP Policy Committee Chair Gary Palmer, R-Ala.; Republican Study Committee Chair Kevin Hern, R-Okla.; Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla.; Rep. Jack Bergman, R-Mich.; Rep. Austin Scott, R-Ga.; Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Texas; and Rep. Dan Meuser, R-Pa.
The vote comes after the candidates made their pitch to the GOP conference on Monday night at a candidate forum.
The front-runner right now appears to be Emmer, who has been endorsed by ex-Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. Other candidates going into the election with several endorsements under their belt are Donalds and Bergman.
It’s likely to take several rounds of voting – a candidate must win a conference majority to be named speaker-designate under current House GOP Conference rules.
If no candidate manages to win a majority during a given round, the person with the least amount of votes is withdrawn from the race and another round is held.
The election comes three weeks after McCarthy’s ouster from the top job, the first time in history the House of Representatives removed their leader in the middle of a congressional term.
Last week, House Republicans selected Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, but he pulled out of the race after he was unable to secure 217 Republican votes – the number needed for a House-wide majority.
Before that, Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La., was the original pick of the conference to replace McCarthy. He dropped out of the race just a day after winning the nomination – opposition from Jordan allies made it clear he would not reach 217 votes.
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