House Republicans nominated Rep. Steve Scalise, their majority leader, to become the chamber’s next speaker during a closed-door meeting on Wednesday, but whether he had enough support to ultimately win the gavel remained in doubt.
By a tally of 113-99, the Louisiana lawmaker edged out Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan, a favorite among conservatives. The swift selection initially seemed to defy the expectations of many who had predicted the GOP would face a prolonged leadership battle.
But several Republicans quickly said they did not plan to vote for Scalise once his nomination heads to the House floor, including Reps. Max Miller, R-Ohio, Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., Thomas Massie, R-Ky., Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., Michael McCloud, R-Texas, Anna Paulina Luna, R-Fla., and Chip Roy, R-Texas. Others told reporters they were unsure of who they would support.
Scalise will need to win support from 217 House members in order fill the post vacated by Rep. Kevin McCarthy, meaning he can likely lose no more than four Republican votes.
“Going to the floor on a nomination with barely half the conference’s support is a bad, bad idea — especially without a specific plan on how to address the spending deadline,” McCloud tweeted.
Republicans have yet to schedule a floor vote for the nomination.