In a significant development within the U.S. House of Representatives, Republican Representative Mike Johnson, hailing from Louisiana, was elected as the 56th Speaker of the House. Johnson’s election concluded a weeks-long deadlock that ensued after the ousting of former Speaker Rep. Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California. This election, conducted through the first House floor ballot, witnessed Johnson securing a victory with 220 votes against Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, the Democratic nominee, who secured 209 votes. The simple majority required for victory was achieved.
Upon his election, Speaker Johnson expressed his gratitude, calling it “the honor of a lifetime” and outlined his vision for the role. He pledged to ensure that the House would deliver results, inspire change for the American people, restore trust, advance a comprehensive conservative policy agenda, and counter the policies of the Biden Administration while supporting international allies. Speaker Johnson emphasized the need to restore sanity to the government.
Johnson’s ability to unite the GOP conference, which holds a narrow majority in the House, marked a stark contrast to the three prior nominees – House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan, and House Majority Whip Tom Emmer, all of whom had failed to garner sufficient support earlier in the month. Johnson, who serves as the vice chairman of the House Republican Conference, secured the GOP nomination after Tom Emmer withdrew from the race.
Among those endorsing Johnson was House Republican Conference Chairwoman Elise Stefanik, who described him as a “man of deep faith” and a “deeply respected constitutional lawyer” dedicated to preserving America’s fundamental principles.
Johnson’s election as Speaker of the House comes at a time when Democrats control the Senate, and President Joe Biden, a Democrat, occupies the White House. In a letter addressed to colleagues before the vote, Johnson proposed a stopgap measure to avert a government shutdown and outlined an “ambitious schedule” to pass individual spending bills, including energy and water appropriations legislation. He also called for a resolution condemning Hamas for its attacks on Israel. Johnson’s plan for the 2024 appropriations process includes provisions aimed at ensuring all appropriations bills pass the House.
In his congressional biography, Johnson is described as a dedicated husband, father of four, and attorney with a background in constitutional law. He has previously served in the Louisiana state legislature before becoming a member of the U.S. House of Representatives in 2016.
Democrats expressed their disapproval of Johnson as the GOP nominee, with a spokesperson for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee asserting that his election as Speaker indicates the GOP’s alignment with the party’s extreme fringes.
It is the honor of a lifetime to have been elected the 56th Speaker of the House.
Thank you to my colleagues, friends, staff, and family for the unmatched support throughout this process.
It has been an arduous few weeks, and a reminder that the House is as complicated and…
— Rep. Mike Johnson (@RepMikeJohnson) October 25, 2023
Today is the day that House Republicans will humbly look in our hearts and elect @RepMikeJohnson as Speaker of the People’s House.
A man of deep faith, Mike epitomizes what it means to be a servant leader. A deeply respected Constitutional lawyer, Mike has dedicated his life… pic.twitter.com/JJJBGf4dRS
— Rep. Elise Stefanik (@RepStefanik) October 25, 2023
— CSPAN (@cspan) October 25, 2023