The House on Wednesday succeeded in electing a new speaker more than three weeks after the ouster of Rep. Kevin McCarthy left the chamber without a leader.
Republicans, who have a narrow majority in the House, struggled to rally around a new candidate to take the speaker’s gavel but found success Wednesday with the nomination of Rep. Mike Johnson. The Louisiana Republican was the fourth Republican to vie for the speakership.
Democrats had nominated House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries to serve in the role.
Biden congratulates Johnson on election win
Update 3:15 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: President Joe Biden and the first lady shared congratulations Wednesday to Johnson after he won the race to become the 56th speaker of the House.
He urged Johnson to move quickly to avoid a looming government shutdown on Nov. 17, to address security efforts in Israel and Ukraine and to work with him and with Democrats.
“As I said when this process began, whoever the Speaker is, I will seek to work with them in good faith on behalf of the American people,” the president said.
He added, “Even though we have real disagreements about important issues, there should be mutual effort to find common ground wherever we can. This is a time for all of us to act responsibly, and to put the good of the American people and the everyday priorities of American families above any partisanship.”
Johnson takes oath of office
Update 2:55 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: Johnson took the oath of office on Wednesday after being elected as the 56th speaker of the House.
Johnson says he looks forward to working with Democrats
Update 2:30 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: Johnson said he was looking forward to working with Jeffries on Wednesday following his election as the 56th speaker of the House.
“I know we see things from very different points of view, but I know that in your heart you love and care about this country and you want to do what’s right, and so we’re going to find common ground there,” he said.
Johnson won the race to become the next House speaker with 220 votes to Jeffries’ 209, with the votes falling on party lines.
Jeffries hands gavel over to Johnson
Update 2:25 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: Jeffries gave Johnson the gavel Wednesday in the House after lawmakers elected the Louisiana Republican to serve as the chamber’s next speaker.
Jeffries described Johnson as “a family man, a hardworking man, a Baptist man, a southern man (and) a son of a firefighter’s household.”
Winning election ‘the honor of a lifetime,’ Johnson says
Update 2:10 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: In a statement published on social media after the House voted to elect Johnson as the 56th speaker of the House, the Louisiana Republican called his win “the honor of a lifetime.”
Johnson wins election with 220 votes
Update 1:54 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: House Republicans pushed their fourth nominee for the speakership past the finish line on Wednesday, electing Johnson to serve in the role.
Johnson got 220 votes — one from each of the Republicans on the House floor on Wednesday — while Jeffries got votes from all 209 Democrats present.
Johnson appears to have votes to win election
Update 1:48 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: With at least 215 votes in his favor, Johnson appeared on track to win the election to become the next speaker of the House in voting on Wednesday.
The vote was the first for Johnson’s nomination and the fourth held since McCarthy’s ouster earlier this month.
Johnson has so far won votes from all Republicans on the House floor. Jeffries has won all votes cast so far by Democrats.
House begins voting to elect next speaker
Update 1:08 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: The House has begun a vote to choose the chamber’s next leader after three failed votes last week.
Aguilar nominates Jeffries for speaker
Update 1:05 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: Rep. Pete Aguilar, D-Calif., nominated the top Democrat in the House, New York’s Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, to serve as speaker of the House.
Democrats have nominated Jeffries as speaker on all four rounds of voting since McCarthy’s ouster.
“On this side of the aisle, we know what leadership looks like,” Aguilar said Wednesday. “Hakeem Jeffries has never turned his back on the will of the American people.”
Stefanik nominates Johnson to serve as House speaker
Update 1 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik on Wednesday formally nominated Johnson to serve as the next House speaker.
The New York Republican described Johnson as “a man of deep faith,” “a deeply respected Constitutional lawyer” and “a friend to all and an enemy to none.”
“Mike is a titan on the Judiciary Committee and a dedicated member of the house Armed Services Committee, and as vice chair of our conference, he has united all of our members to speak clearly and boldly on behalf of the American people,” she said.
She added, “Today is the day we get this done.”
Speaker nominee will need 215 votes to win
Update 12:53 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: With 429 members of the House of Representatives present for voting on Wednesday, the next House speaker will need to win 215 votes to take up the gavel.
The numbers show he would need support from all but five House Republicans to win the election.
Johnson expects he will win election ‘on the first vote’
Update 12:35 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: Johnson told CNN that he expects to become the next speaker of the House “on the first vote” on Wednesday after three other Republicans failed to cross the finish line.
Johnson became the GOP’s pick for speaker on Wednesday following failed bids by Reps. Steve Scalise, R-La., Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and Tom Emmer, R-Minn.
House reconvenes ahead of expected speakership vote
Update 12:05 p.m. EDT Oct. 25: The House has been called to order ahead of an expected vote for House speaker on Wednesday.
Original report: The House Republican Conference chair, Rep. Elise Stefanik, congratulated Johnson in a post Tuesday on social media.
The House is scheduled to meet at noon.
Johnson, R-La., is the fourth Republican named as the party’s nominee following the Oct. 3 vote that removed McCarthy, R-Calif., from his role as speaker.
Before GOP lawmakers chose Johnson as their candidate on Tuesday, they picked House Majority Whip Tom Emmer. Hours after Republicans announced his nomination, Emmer dropped out of the race after struggling to gain the support necessary to take his bid over the finish line.
Last week, the House failed to vote through a different GOP candidate for speaker — Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio. Republicans dropped him as their candidate on Friday after he shed votes over the course of three ballots last week.
In January, McCarthy lost 14 rounds of voting before he won enough support to become the 55th speaker of the House.
Democrats have consistently nominated House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., as their candidate for speaker, though there are not enough Democrats in the House to give him the majority needed to win the election.