The House is in chaos and lawmakers are playing shifty games.
On Sunday, Representative Mike Turner (R-Ohio) expressed concerns about the prolonged vacancy of the Speaker’s position in the House of Representatives. He mentioned that if House Republicans do not swiftly elect a Speaker, a bipartisan solution with Democrats may become necessary to restore the chamber’s functionality. This situation has arisen due to the historic removal of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) from the Speaker role almost two weeks ago.
According to The Hill, during an appearance on CBS News’s “Face the Nation,” Turner was asked about the possibility of Republicans collaborating with Democrats to select a Speaker who is mutually agreeable. He emphasized his preference for a Republican solution and endorsed Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) for the position. However, Turner acknowledged that if a small group of hard-line GOP members obstructs the process and prevents the House from resuming its regular work, a bipartisan agreement may become unavoidable.
Turner stated, “I think Jim Jordan will be an excellent Speaker. I think he’ll be able to get to 217. If not, we have other leaders in the House. And certainly, if there is a need, if a radical, almost negligible faction of Republicans hinders the House’s functioning, then it is likely that a compromise will have to be reached.”
The removal of McCarthy as Speaker occurred through a vote of 216-210 almost two weeks ago, marking the first time a Speaker was ousted from the position. Eight Republicans joined all House Democrats in supporting this move, resulting in a divided Republican leadership.
Following McCarthy’s removal, the contest for the Speakership has been marked by internal disagreements and opposition, making it challenging to secure the necessary 217 votes for the top position. House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (La.) initially won a nomination vote but withdrew when it became apparent he would struggle to secure the requisite floor votes.
Subsequently, Jim Jordan re-entered the race and won the nomination in a second vote, defeating challenger Rep. Austin Scott (R-Ga.). However, it remains uncertain whether Jordan can garner the needed votes.
According to Turner, Jordan is actively working to build a coalition and secure the required 217 votes.
In the interview, Turner also addressed allegations against Jordan related to his alleged knowledge of sexual abuse when he coached wrestlers at Ohio State University over two decades ago. Turner asserted that no one has come forward with credible evidence that Jordan had any knowledge of the abuse. He clarified that the incidents at Ohio State did not fall under Jordan’s direct responsibility, as he was not the head coach at the time.