House To Vote On Republican Mike Johnson For Speaker

The House is expected to vote Wednesday on whether to elect Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA) as its speaker, after he became the fourth Republican pick for the job since Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) was ousted three weeks ago.

Rep. Mike Johnson, R-LA

On Wednesday, McCarthy threw his support behind Johnson, calling him “a friend, fighter, and principled conservative” who “has my full support.”

Yet, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) said on CNN that Johnson “appears to be an extreme-right wing ideologue,” citing Johnson’s previous positions on abortion, Social Security, and the 2020 election.

“Those are extreme views,” he said, adding that Democrats “would have been open to” empowering Rep. Patrick T. McHenry (R-NC), the speaker pro tempore, as a bipartisan olive branch to reopen the House and avert the election of a ‘far-right speaker.’

Until the GOP gets it act together, the House is effectively frozen from conducting legislative business outside of holding hearings on bills that can’t be introduced on the House floor.

This means we’re once again gliding into another deadline for a government shutdown – this time slated for Nov. 17. The House also wants to send supplemental assistance to Ukraine, Israel and other foreign countries (oh no!), as well as a myriad of must-pass bills, such as the Farm Bill and reauthorizing the FAA, according to the Washington Post.

What do we know about Johnson?

He was previously defeated on an internal House GOP ballot by Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-MN), however Emmer withdrew his candidacy last night, just hours after winning the GOP nomination for the role.

Johnson then emerged during the next round of Tuesday night votes.

He’s also “one of the smartest and most principled opponents of the US Security State (CIA/FBI) and its attempt to control online political speech,” according to Glenn Greenwald.

As Axios notes;

Johnson, 51, has been a member of the House of Representatives since 2016, and is currently serving his fourth term in the House.

  • He represents Louisiana’s fourth congressional district, which includes nearly 760,000 residents. Johnson won the seat with the largest margin of victory in his region in more than 50 years, according to a biography on his website.

Of note: After earning both a bachelor’s degree and a law degree from Louisiana State University, Johnson spent nearly 20 years practicing constitutional law.

  • Johnson then served in the Louisiana Legislature from February 2015 to January 2017.
  • He and his wife, Kelly Johnson, have been married since 1999 and have four children.

Johnson is currently serving as vice chair of the House Republican Conference for a second time, after a unanimous re-election last year. 

In a weekend letter to colleagues, Johnson said it’s the duty of House Republicans to “chart a new path,” and that he has a “clear vision and plan for how to lead.”

Now if he can just get the job!


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