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House Republicans Not Yet Sold On Jim Jordan Without The Baggage
Your House GOP Speaker Follies Update!
So, those fools in the House Republican caucus failed to elect themselves a speaker … again. For a brief moment, it seemed as if they had agreed upon Majority Leader Steve Scalise, who’s terrible but he’s at least not Jim Jordan. The conference had voted for Scalise 113 to 99 and even Matt Gaetz was on board.
“I’m excited for him,” Gaetz said after the vote. “I can’t wait to go vote for Steve Scalise. Long live Speaker Scalise.”
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Most Republicans think Scalise would provide a “similar policy vision” as McCarthy — so nonstop MAGA boot licking with limited moral clarity. However, while Gaetz loathes McCarthy, he’s expressed “renewed excitement” about Scalise.
“We’ve got the legend from Louisiana who’s gonna lead us. And I think that he’ll be invigorating to our activists,” Gaetz raved. “I think he’ll be a great communicator to the country. And I think he’ll do a great job uniting the Republican conference.”
Scalise’s chief competitor for the gavel, Jim Jordan, seemingly accepted the election results — a refreshing change for both of them — and was prepared to nominate Scalise from the floor.
But we’re talking about Republicans here, so it obviously quickly fell apart. Not long after Scalise won the internal nomination, multiple House Republicans vowed to not back Mr. Scalise on the floor. Bob Good from Virginia, one of the eight who bounced McCarthy, was disappointed that Scalise had actual leadership experience, like a chump.
“I think the conference had a chance to give the country hope that we were going to bring much-needed change and instead the conference voted for status quo,” he said. “Mr. Scalise has obviously been part of our leadership team for many years. So it’s hard to envision that he will be a change agent.”
“I’m not switching my vote,” said Max Miller from Ohio. “I’m Jim Jordan all the way.” That’s a terrible way to go.
Scalise voted to overturn Joe Biden’s Electoral College win, so it is amusing to see his speakership ambitions consumed by that very same anti-democratic sentiment. He only needed to win over four of the anti-McCarthy eight, but that math veered into a more alarming direction for him when many McCarthy supporters, like Miller, publicly announced their opposition.
This includes Marjorie Taylor Greene, who’s been missing during most of this drama. It’s like a TV series where the actor who plays a key villain is absent for several episodes because they’re in rehab. Greene declared her support for Jordan, which makes sense considering that her twisted lord and savior Donald Trump endorsed him.
“I just voted for Jim Jordan for Speaker on a private ballot in conference, and I will be voting for Jim Jordan on the House floor,” Greene posted on social media, once again demonstrating how little respect she has for free and fair elections. “I like Steve Scalise, and I like him so much that I want to see him defeat cancer more than sacrifice his health in the most difficult position in Congress. I lost my father to cancer and it’s a very serious battle.”
Oh, screw you, lady.
Yes, Steve Scalise revealed in August that he was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a rare blood cancer. There’s no cure but Scalise is reportedly responding well to treatment. Rep. Tony Gonzales told Axios, “No one loves Steve Scalise more than Jennifer, his wife, and Jennifer says as a family they decided to run for speaker. That tells me all I need to know about Steve’s health.”
Scalise and his family know more about his health and prognosis than Greene, who is incapable of human empathy. What she’s crassly suggesting is that a weakened Scalise lacks the strength to help her destroy American democracy.
Nancy “Hester” Mace remains a holdout. Our breakout chaos agent this season went on CNN and reminded everyone that Scalise once sold himself as David Duke “without the baggage.” Oh, and she notes that Scalise attended a white supremacist conference that Duke organized in 2002. She could never support someone like that for speaker. Who you willingly associate with to win elections obviously reflects your true character.
“I would be doing an enormous disservice to the voters I represent in South Carolina,” she said, straining credulity all to be damned: In May, a lower court ruled that Mace’s district was an illegal racial gerrymander that was made more Republican when a sizable number of Black voters were relocated from Rep. James Clyburn’s district after the 2020 census.
It’s probably true that the voters she actually represents in her now solid-red district love to see her boosting Jim Jordan. She reminds me of desperate, power-hungry Season 7 “Cheers” Rebecca Howe in this bit of comedy with CNN’s Jake Tapper:
“I don’t think Jim Jordan is out of the mix,” she claimed. “I’ve talked to a lot of people who still support him. I’ve actually talked to Democrats who trust him at his word.”
Tapper didn’t let this obvious lie go unchallenged: “Jim Jordan?”
“Yeah, I’ve talked to Democrats over the past week about who do they trust, even though they wouldn’t agree with him on many issues …”
“The Jim Jordan from Ohio?”
“Oh yes!” Mace insisted. “The Jim Jordan from Ohio!”
Tapper just wouldn’t let up: “Democrats in Congress?”
“Yes, they can work with him.”
“Name one Democrat from Congress who trusts Jim Jordan.”
She refused to discuss her “private conversations with Democrats,” probably because they all involved Democrats pointing at that stupid “A” on her shirt and laughing out loud.
Republicans abandoned plans for a full House speaker vote Wednesday afternoon, so Democrats could save their popcorn. Scalise spent Wednesday evening in one-on-one meetings trying to win support but that only resulted in him losing votes. Meanwhile, Hakeem Jeffries boasts the unwavering support of his entire caucus.
The path forward for Scalise looks perilous. Some mainstream Republicans from districts Biden won are now refusing to back him.
“He came out with 110 votes; he needs 217,” Intelligence Committee Chair Mike Turner said on CNN. “He’s going to have to give us a message or an understanding of how he’s going to bridge that gap and make certain that he brings Congress together and not divide the Republican conference more.”
One top House Republican was even bleaker about Scalise’s prospects: “He has no path to 217.”
The ongoing speaker debacle has become so operatic everyone should start singing in Italian, and Don Bacon for one is fed up.
“These folks are destroying our conference and apparently want to be in the minority,” Bacon vented to CNN. “They don’t respect the customs of the House that have gone on for over two centuries.”
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