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Tags: kevin hern | gop speaker | vote | jordan | scalise

Oklahoma Rep. Hern Says He's Running for Speaker

By    |   Friday, 20 October 2023 03:23 PM EDT

Rep. Kevin Hern, R-Okla., jumped into the House speaker race after Republicans turned down Jim Jordan's bid for the third time Friday and dropped Jordan as the nominee.

"We need a different type of leader who has a proven track record of success, which is why I'm running for Speaker of the House," Hern, a member of the Ways and Means Committee, posted on X.

In a statement with his post, Hern said he voted for Jordan to remain the speaker designee, "but [the Republican] Conference has determined he no longer will hold that title."

"We just had two Speaker Designates go down," Hern wrote, referring to Jordan and Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La. "We must unify and do it fast."

Also reportedly jumping back into the race is Rep. Austin Scott, R-Ga., who lost to Jordan in a vote by the Republican Conference to become the speaker designee.

Republicans have been in chaos while trying to elect a speaker to replace Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., who was ousted in a historic motion to vacate vote led by eight Republicans, including Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., with support from Democrats.

Hern, who has represented Oklahoma's 1st Congressional District since 2018, might not have the name recognition as Jordan and Scalise among Republican voters, but as chair of the Republican Study Committee (RSC), he leads the largest bloc of House conservatives. He also is a supporter of former President Donald Trump.

Shortly after McCarthy's ouster, Hern was mentioned as a possible candidate, but he declined to challenge Scalise and Jordan, instead making a bid to become majority leader after Scalise was voted speaker designee. Scalise later withdrew his candidacy after realizing he could not get the 217 votes necessary to secure the speaker's gavel, leading to Jordan's ascension.

"Many of you are members of the Republican Study Committee, where I've been advancing strong conservative policies to guide our House Majority," Hern wrote in a letter to colleagues regarding his bid for majority leader. "RSC is a leader in the conference on fiscal responsibility.

"We've introduced pro-life initiatives, hosted diplomats, and ambassadors from nations around the world, led energy discussions, pushed for stronger border security policies, and built stronger ties with our Republican Senate colleagues. People trust RSC as the Conference's policy powerhouse, and I have been proud to continue that tradition."

In January, as House Republicans struggled to elect McCarthy as speaker, Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., implored the party to move away from McCarthy. She nominated Hern, who received two votes on the eighth ballot. It took 15 ballots for McCarthy to be elected speaker.

"We need to get to a point where we start evaluating what life after Kevin McCarthy looks like," Boebert said at the time, according to the The Wall Street Journal. "Don't be afraid to do the right thing. I believe Kevin Hern is a unifier."

Michael Katz

Michael Katz is a Newsmax reporter with more than 30 years of experience reporting and editing on news, culture, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Rep. Kevin Hern, R-Okla., jumped into the race for House speaker after Republicans turned down Jim Jordan's bid for the third time Friday and dropped him as the nominee.
kevin hern, gop speaker, vote, jordan, scalise
Friday, 20 October 2023 03:23 PM
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