Trump as Speaker of the House? – Former President Donald Trump has already endorsed Republican Ohio Representative Jim Jordan as his pick for the new Speaker of the House of Representatives, but he also floated one other possible candidate for the post – himself.
Donald Trump: The Speaker?
Recognizing the current disunity among members of the GOP in the House, the former commander-in-chief said that he would be willing to become a short-term Speaker while House Republicans clean house and get their affairs in order.
The offer follows the recent ouster of Republican California Representative Kevin McCarthy from the Speaker position, which fellow GOP member, Florida Representative Mark Gaetz, instigated.
Gaetz, and several others who voted to take away McCarthy’s coveted position in Congress expressed disappointment with the former Speaker, whom the Florida representative called a “liar” after McCarthy opted to compromise with Democrats in the House to pass a stopgap spending bill that would fund the federal government for a month and half.
Gaetz and seven other House Republicans were joined by all the liberal representatives present at the time. After tense exchanges – primarily between GOP members in the House – McCarthy was voted off the Speakership, 216 to 210.
Trump said that his extensive connections in Congress, as well as his nature as a unifier, make him a great candidate for Speaker of the House.
“I have been asked to speak as a unifier because I have so many friends in Congress. If they don’t get the vote, they have asked me if I would consider taking the speakership until they get somebody longer-term, because I am running for president,” Trump told Fox News Digital.
“They have asked me if I would take it for a short period of time for the party, until they come to a conclusion — I’m not doing it because I want to — I will do it if necessary, should they not be able to make their decision,” the former president added.
Trump also said that he could serve in the interim for anywhere from 30 to 90 days if the GOP members in the House will not agree on whom to vote as Speaker.
While the U.S. Constitution does not require the Speaker of the House to be a member of Congress – which would ostensibly allow Trump to take the post if he secures the required number of votes – a rule, adopted by House Republicans at that, could stand in the way of a Trump speakership.
“(a) A member of the Republican Leadership shall step aside if indicted on a charge of a felony for which a sentence of two or more years imprisonment may be imposed,” Rule 26 of the House Republican Conference reads.
Still, the former chief executive was more than glowing in his praise and endorsement of Jordan, whom he called a “star” and “very successful.”
“Congressman Jim Jordan has been a STAR long before making his very successful journey to Washington, D.C., representing Ohio’s 4th Congressional District,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social site early Friday. “He will be a GREAT Speaker of the House, & has my Complete & Total Endorsement!” Trump posted on his Truth Social account.
Ironically, McCarthy also became Speaker due to Trump’s endorsement. However, many Republicans were reluctant to appoint him to the post in the first place – the California representative only managed to take the gavel after 15 intense rounds of voting.
Another Republican in the House, Representative Steve Scalise of Louisiana – who also serves as the majority party’s whip – is also vying for the speakership, but it is unclear how he will proceed given recent events.
To become speaker, a candidate should secure 218 votes. The Republicans currently have 221 seats in the House, while the Democrats have 212.
Tim Ramos has written for various publications, corporations, and organizations – covering everything from finance, politics, travel, entertainment, and sports – in Asia and the U.S. for more than 10 years.