House Speaker Election Open Thread

CongressUPDATE 12:00 PM: Click here to watch a live feed of the House.

By Adam Bitely — This afternoon the Speaker of the House will be elected for the 113th Congress. As we noted yesterday, rumors are running wild on Capitol Hill that Boehner will fall short of the necessary 218 votes to secure the speakership. Outgoing Rep. Jeff Landry (R-LA) has noted that enough House Republicans have come forward to oppose Boehner to cause him to fall short barring Democrats crossing over and delivering Boehner a victory. Two sources have confirmed that there are over 20 Republicans who plan to oppose Boehner during the election.

Last night, Boehner met with the Republican caucus to confirm to the members that he will pursue the speakership regardless of any dissent in GOP ranks. Boehner went so far as to promise to Republican members that he will stop negotiating with Obama on his own and promised votes on the Hurricane Sandy relief vote.

This morning, news emerged that conservatives plan to push Boehner to a second ballot on the House floor:

The plan the conservatives will likely follow is to force at least two, maybe several elections until a suitable alternative steps up to unite the party. If enough Republicans – 17 at a minimum – vote for someone besides Boehner as Speaker during the first election shortly after noon today, it will go to a second vote. Some groups have confirmed that more than 20 House Republicans plan to vote for somebody else as Speaker.

If that happens, the House will vote in several consecutive elections until a majority of every member voting agrees on a Speaker.

According to the plan some conservative members have circulated, the precedent they’ll be following was last employed in 1923 when Massachusetts Republican Rep. Frederick Gillett lost his first eight bids for re-election before winning on the ninth. A Congressional Research Service (CRS) report the members seeking to ouster Boehner have been circulating for weeks notes that the 1923 incident is the only time this has happened since the “two established national parties,” Democrats and Republicans, took power.

Also, the Boston Globe has endorsed Boehner for Speaker because he will keep Tea Party “extremists” from being relevant in Congress… As the Globe wrote, “For placing ideological purity over compromise, and a willingness to use procedural mechanisms to gum up Congress in order to get his way, Cantor would be a poor choice. Americans who want a more cooperative approach should hope that Boehner prevails, and continues his recent efforts to keep Tea Party extremists out of key committee assignments.”

We will be covering the election throughout the day so be sure to check back to this page frequently for developments.

Adam Bitely is the Editor-in-Chief of NetRightDaily.com.

This article has One comment
  • S Rubicon 03.01.2013 12:25 PM

    The Tea Party “Extremists” label is as despicable as it gets. As if there is
    no extremist group among Democrats. They say Pelosi did a good job of keeping
    the House functioning together. Pelosi had a majority & did not need ANY
    Republicans so long as the extremists of the Democrat party could coerce any
    member that dissented on any issue. They used bribes, extortion & numerous
    other forceful methods to demand member toe the line & that crippled
    Republicans at the time. Boehner does not have it in him to threaten those who
    dissent and, he knows full well those Tea Party members were elected by a
    constituency who wanted them to stand firm on the deficit, budget, debt,
    spending & every other item where Democrats have gone wild. The problems in
    Washington are not of the Tea Party. Just in case some missed it, all of these
    problems existed LONG before there was a Tea Party!! Obama has Republicans at
    each others throats & he wants it that way be sewing the impression of any
    dissent he can. He has done a superb job of that with help from a complicit
    media & bureaucracy as well as the plethora of NGO or organizing groups the
    left funds to cause trouble whenever they seek to force any issue through.
    Republicans are not good at threats & extortion, but Pelosi & Democrats
    learned well those despicable tactics from their union buddies. Boehner is a
    nice guy as is most of the establishment Republican membership. The problems
    with Congress are not Republicans, they are a president who wants to demand
    & be rubberstamped for whatever he wants to do. He does not want debate
    since the vacuous nature of his plans would be revealed. So he portrays
    Congressional problems as Republicans when they are & have been
    obstructionist par excellence… Senate Majority Reid, ‘former’ Speaker Pelosi,
    & a President who thinks he need not abide by the Constitution, nor does he
    need or want an active House, unless it merely acts in obedience to his demands.
    The media has allowed Obama to get away with this & Reid & Pelosi have
    been deceptive enough to help Obama getaway with it. Worse is stupid or
    uneducated voters have actually bought into the specious propaganda of Obama
    & Democrats in general. Soros bought & paid for government is getting
    away with all sorts of despicable tricks that the people will end up paying for,
    for decades. Boy are we in trouble!!

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