Republican Rep. Mike Johnson Elected Speaker of the House, Ending Leadership Crisis

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Republican Rep. Mike Johnson Elected Speaker of the House, Ending Leadership Crisis

Republican Rep. Mike Johnson of Louisiana has been elected as the new speaker of the House of Representatives. This decision comes after a three-week leadership crisis that has caused a standstill in Congress.

Prior to this, Johnson had a relatively low public profile as the vice chairman of the House Republican conference. However, he gained prominence when he secured the party’s nomination for speaker.

Despite being the fourth nominee chosen by the GOP conference in two weeks, Johnson received unanimous support from the 220 Republicans who voted. The deeply divided party had struggled to find a candidate who could garner enough support.

In contrast, every Democrat who voted cast their ballot for Minority Leader Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y.

Johnson was able to rally the GOP conference behind him after the three previous nominees were rejected by recalcitrant Republicans. These nominees included House Majority Leader Steve Scalise of Louisiana, Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, and Majority Whip Tom Emmer of Minnesota.

Former President Donald Trump also lent his support to Johnson’s bid, urging Republicans to vote for the Congressman from Louisiana. Furthermore, Johnson gained the backing of several moderate New York Republicans who had been hesitant to support more conservative contenders for the top job.

Johnson, serving his fourth term in Congress, will now preside over the House during critical times. The country is facing a potential government shutdown, Israel is engaged in conflict with Hamas, and Ukraine is grappling with Russia’s invasion.

The House must pass spending legislation by Nov. 17 to keep the government operational, and President Joe Biden has called on Congress to provide emergency security assistance to Israel and Ukraine.

Notably, Johnson voted against legislation in September that has kept the government running until November, and he has previously opposed assistance for Kyiv. He recently emphasized the importance of taking necessary action to help Israel vanquish Hamas.

Johnson is known for his staunch social conservatism and actively participated in Republican efforts to overturn Biden’s 2020 election victory. He supported a lawsuit seeking to block the certification of Biden’s victories in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Additionally, he backed objections in Congress to the certification of Arizona’s and Pennsylvania’s 2020 presidential results.

Moreover, Johnson served on Trump’s legal team during the former president’s first impeachment. He has also worked for the Alliance Defense Freedom, an ultraconservative advocacy group that advocates for restricting abortion access and prohibiting same-sex marriage.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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