After weeks of deadlock, Republican Mike Johnson elected US House speaker

Newly elected Speaker of the House Mike Johnson addresses the US House of Representatives after he was elected to be the new Speaker at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, US, October 25, 2023. — Reuters
  • Ally of Trump, Johnson was unanimously supported by his party.
  • His election concludes a period of Congressional paralysis.
  • Ex-speaker Kevin McCarthy was removed from the job on Oct 4.

After weeks of Republican infighting, the US House of Representatives has elected its 56th speaker, Louisiana’s Mike Johnson.

An ally of Donald Trump, Johnson was unanimously supported by his party. His election concludes a period of Congressional paralysis amidst international and domestic crises and party disputes.

Minnesota’s former ice hockey coach, Tom Emmer,  a Florida Republican Byron Donalds, and Austin Scott, a Georgia lawmaker with 12 years in Congress were among the candidates looking to fill up the spot after Kevin McCarthy’s ouster.

Kevin Hern, hailing from Oklahoma and serving as chairman of the influential conservative Republican Study Committee was also in the run along with, Gary Palmer, Pete Session, Jack Bergman, and Dan Meuser.  

In a historic moment in American history on October 4, Speaker of the House of Representatives Kevin McCarthy was removed from the job as a small number of fellow Republicans joined in an effort launched by Democrats to oust the leader of the House with a 216-210 vote.

For the first time in its 234-year history, the House backed a resolution “to vacate the office of the speaker” setting the stage for an unprecedented contest to replace Kevin McCarthy a year before the presidential election.

Representative Matt Gaetz called Kevin McCarthy “a creature of the swamp” following his ouster.

“He has risen to power by collecting special interest money and redistributing that money in exchange for favours,” Gaetz said Tuesday adding that “we are breaking the fever and we should elect a speaker who is better.”

Representative Patrick McHenry from the Republican party — who is a close ally of the ousted leader of the house — was named as acting Speaker from a list designated by McCarthy and shared with the House clerk.


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