Ohio Republican Jim Jordan joins race for US House Speaker


Ohio Republican Jim Jordan, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has announced his plans of joining the race to become the next Speaker of the US House of Representatives following Kevin McCarthy’s ouster from the post in a historic vote.

Jordan’s announcement came a day after McCarthy’s removal and shortly after House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, a Louisiana Republican, also formally entered the race on Wednesday.

“We are at a critical crossroad in our nation’s history. Now is the time for our Republican conference to come together to keep our promises to Americans,” Jordan said in a letter to colleagues, seeking their support for his bid for the speakership.

READ: US House Majority Leader Steve Scalise enters race for Speaker after McCarthy’s removal

Ousted US Speaker Kevin McCarthy

Jordan, who was elected to Congress in 2006, was a former chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, considered to be the most conservative and farthest-right bloc within the House Republican Conference. He was nominated for the speakership in January this year by hard-right Republicans who opposed McCarthy. At that time, however, Jordan maintained his support for McCarthy, who won the position in January after 15 rounds of voting on the House floor.

McCarthy, a California Republican, was ousted from the position in a 216-210 vote on Tuesday night, marking the first time in US history that a House Speaker hadbeen voted out of office in the middle of a term. Eight Republicans joined Democrats in removing McCarthy from the speakership.

The removal came less than a day after hardline Republican Representative Matt Gaetz filed a resolution to oust McCarthy through a process known as “a motion to vacate”.

Gaetz and other hardline Republicans had warned for weeks they would move to oust McCarthy if the latter had relied on Democrats to pass funding legislation, criticising him for failing to pass legislation with deep spending cuts and border security provisions.

Republican Representative Patrick T. McHenry from North Carolina has been named interim Speaker of the House after McCarthy’s ousting.

McCarthy has announced that he would not seek the position again, setting up an expected intense intraparty battle for the speakership.

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