WASHINGTON, D.C. – After several rounds of closed-door voting, House Republicans selected Representative Tom Emmer (R-MN) as the next Speaker nominee. Tuesday afternoon, Emmer dropped out after it became clear he did not have the support needed to win the gavel.
Reports indicate Emmer was about 20 votes short of securing 217 even after spending most of Tuesday working the room, answering questions and trying to gather more support following his nomination.
Congressman Glenn Thompson (R-PA) said he’s frustrated that the conference cannot get behind a nominee.
“We’re trying to reach a majority vote for Tom Emmer,” said Rep. Thompson. When asked Tuesday morning if he believes Emmer could reach 217 votes on the House floor, Thompson replied “I don’t know. It would require some people learning how to do teamwork.”
It’s been difficult for House Republicans to rally behind a Speaker candidate after ousting Kevin McCarthy (R- CA) three weeks ago. Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) dropped out after it was clear he would not secure the 217 votes necessary to win the gavel. Last week there were three failed floor votes for Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH).
As House Majority Whip, it is Emmer’s job to secure votes. However, the inability for him to gain the support necessary indicates how divided the conference is.
Republicans want to secure enough support for a candidate behind closed doors before they bring the official vote to the House floor. They met behind closed doors again Tuesday afternoon and will likely continue to do so until a candidate can reach 217 votes.