Pennsylvania House Members Courted in Whip Race

Monday, 16 Jun 2014 04:08 PM

By Lisa Degnen

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Lawmakers from Pennsylvania are meeting Tuesday to discuss if they should vote as a bloc in the upcoming race for whip.

Politico reports that the state's 13 delegates may provide crucial votes in the race among Reps. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, Peter Roskam of Illinois, and Marlin Stutzman of Indiana over who will be the next GOP Whip to replace Eric Cantor.

All three have scheduled meetings with the group for Tuesday to explain why they are the best candidate for the job.

"Roskam’s team, in particular, sees the Pennsylvania delegation as crucial because it includes several moderates that might be reluctant to back the more conservative Scalise and Stutzman," Politico reports.

Pennsylvania Republicans cover a broad spectrum from moderate Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick to conservative Bill Shuster. At the moment Scalise has about 100 supporters, Roskam 90 and Stutzman about 50 backers in his camp, which makes the Keystone State members vital.

Stutzman sent a letter to House Republicans on Monday asking for their support in the whip race.

"I’m running because I see the potential to fine-tune our process; to make it leaner and more effective in passing good legislation," Stutzman wrote, according to the site. "I’m running because I have the experience and knowledge to improve the inner workings of our conference. I’m running because on Sept. 11, 2001, I promised my 3-week-old son a better, more secure America, and I see a way forward that will help me keep that promise."

Politico says Republicans will meet behind closed doors in the Longworth House Office Building on Thursday to vote in a secret ballot.

"Assuming each lawmaker in the 233-member conference participates, a candidate needs 117 votes for victory. If no one reaches that threshold on the first ballot, the person with the fewest votes will be eliminated, and the race will be decided on a second ballot," Politico said.

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