U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL) and a handful of Republican members are open to working with Democrats in order to ensure that House Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan (R-OH) does not replace former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), according to a report from NBC News. Jordan was selected as the conference nominee after Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) opted to withdraw his bid. The Freedom Caucus member has also received endorsements from former President Donald Trump and Kevin McCarthy.
Jordan needs to secure 218 votes in order to become the new House Speaker, meaning that just five Republican “no” votes could tank his bid.
According to the report, Jordan is facing opposition from a handful of Republicans led by Rep. Mike Rogers, who needed to be physically restrained after he lunged at Rep. Gaetz during the initial Speaker votes this past January. Rogers reportedly said that there was “there was nothing that Jordan could do to get his support as Speaker of the House,” according to a report from the Anniston Star.
Upon leaving a closed-door congressional session on Friday, Rogers reportedly told Democrat House Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) to reach out with possible concessions in order to work out a deal. “They put us in this ditch along with eight traitors,” Rogers told reporters. “We’re still the majority party, we’re willing to work with them but they gotta tell us what they need.”
Rogers repeatedly referred to the eight Republicans who voted to oust McCarthy as “traitors” who have “paralyzed” the GOP conference, according to the report.
Other Republicans, including Reps. Ann Wagner (R-MO), Don Bacon (R-NE), and Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) have also stated that they will not vote for Jordan, according to NBC News.
Rep. Mike Rogers, who chairs the Armed Services Committee, told reporters Thursday after a closed-door House GOP meeting that he wants Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries to tell Republicans what concessions they’ll have to make for Democrats to help them elect a speaker. pic.twitter.com/qRPpMSLLpP
— Forbes (@Forbes) October 13, 2023
Rogers’ opposition to Jordan has earned rebukes from a number of conservative leaders, including Senator Mike Lee (R-UT). “It’s outrageous that Jim Jordan has been nominated by the party, has the support of McCarthy and McHenry, and yet Mike Rogers and a few House Republicans would rather work with Democrats,” Lee wrote in an X post. “If you’re a House Republican, please vote for Jim Jordan—not Hakeem Jeffries.”
Rep. Anna Paulina Luna (R-FL) called for additional votes to be conducted in public so that Republican voters can have transparency and make their opinions known. “You guys want to go 15 rounds? Fine. Let’s do it. On the floor. For the country to see. This Monday,” the freshman congresswoman said.
“You want to explain to your voters why you blocked Jordan? Then bring it.. because from the calls I’m getting, they are asking me what’s going on,” she continued. “I have an infant son and I spent the last week up in Washington trying to figure this out while members of Congress LEFT.”
You guys want to go 15 rounds? Fine. Let’s do it. On the floor. For the country to see. This Monday.
You want to explain to your voters why you blocked Jordan? Then bring it.. because from the calls I’m getting, they are asking me what’s going on.
I have an infant son and I…
— Anna Paulina Luna (@realannapaulina) October 14, 2023
In addition to the endorsement from former President Trump, former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told reporters that he will be supporting Jim Jordan. “We’ve gotta get this back on track, we’ve got to solve this problem,” McCarthy told reporters on Friday. “I think we’re on a path now to do that. They were wanting to debate a-lot of different things. They said, ‘let’s move through this, let’s have a good debate.’”
“They tried to make a motion in there to bring me back and I just told them, ‘no, let’s not do that. Let’s walk through this and have an election,’” he continued. “And I think Jim Jordan would do an excellent job.”
McCarthy also stated that he believes Jordan will ultimately secure 218 votes and be elected Speaker.
Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA) — a McCarthy ally who emerged as a leading candidate on the second GOP conference vote — also endorsed Jordan and called on Republicans who voted for him to throw their support behind Jordan.
“I highly respect Jim Jordan. He is an asset to the Republican Party and our nominee for Speaker,” Scott wrote in an X post on Friday. “Our conference has spoken, and now we must unite behind Jordan so we can get Congress back to work.”
Republicans are expected to assess their progress on Monday evening before heading to a floor vote on Tuesday.