Scalise Trying to Undermine Jordan Speakership Bid Ahead of 2nd Ballot

UNITED STATES - OCTOBER 17: Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, center, the Republican nominee for sp
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) is attempting to undermine Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan’s (R-OH) bid for the Speakership gavel after voting for him on the first ballot, sources familiar with the matter have confirmed to Breitbart News. 

CNN’s Annie Grayer noted on X that the majority leader would not commit to helping Jordan secure the 17 outstanding votes he needs for the top House job. This is despite Jordan requesting his aid, as the House has not had a Speaker since now-former Speaker Kevin McCarthy was removed on October 3. Sources on Capitol Hill have confirmed Grayer’s reporting to Breitbart News. 

As she puts it, sources say Scalise, who failed in his bid for the gavel, is “Not being a team player.” 

Breitbart News Washington Bureau Chief Matthew Boyle has further reported that Scalise, “who failed in his own speakership bid last week is the leader of the subversion against the Republican conference and Speaker-designee Jim Jordan,” citing sources familiar with the matter. 

WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 12: U.S. House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) walks away from members of the media after announcing that he is taking his name out of the running for U.S. Speaker of House on October 12, 2023 in Washington, DC. House Republicans are working to elect a new Speaker after the House passed a Motion to Vacate that removed former Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) from his post. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Grayer also reported that Jordan had asked Scalise to nominate him on the House Floor ahead of the first ballot, but Scalise refused. 

“When Scalise was the Speaker elect, Jordan offered to give Scalise a nominating speech,” she added. 

Notably, House GOP Conference Chairwoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY) nominated Jordan on the first ballot. 

Grassroots Republicans are furious with Scalise amid the developments. Conservative activist Debbie Dooley, who is a Louisiana native, said Scalise “is doing his favorite thing to do – backstabbing.” 

“Scalise is pretending to support Jim Jordan but is organizing the ones that refuse to vote for Jordan. He voted for Jordan, but is encouraging others not to behind the scene,” she argued. 

A Scalise spokesperson told Grayer: 

Leader Scalise has been the only candidate throughout this process who has publicly declared he will be supportive of whomever the conference nominates for Speaker, and his position has not changed. He voted for Jim Jordan on the floor and will continue to do so.

Jordan eclipsed the 200-vote milestone in his first ballot on Tuesday but still needs 17 votes to obtain a majority of members and win the top job in the House. Scalise, along with other members of the current GOP leadership, including Speaker Pro-Tempore Patrick McHenry, Stefanik, and Majority Whip Tom Emmer, all voted for Jordan. 

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) garnered all 212 of the Democrat votes. 

The list of 20 holdouts, of which Jordan was seeking Scalise’s help in bringing around, voted for an array of current and former congressmen, including McCarthy, Emmer, Scalise, Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK), Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY), and former Rep Lee Zeldin (R-NY). The holdouts and who they voted for are as follows, per Breitbart News Capitol Hill correspondent Bradley Jaye: 

  1. Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE) – McCarthy 
  2. Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO) – Emmer 
  3. Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer (R_NE) – McCarthy
  4. Rep. Anthony D’Esposito (R-NY) Zeldin
  5. Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) – Scalise
  6. Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-TX) –  Garcia
  7. Rep. Andrew Garbarino (R-NY) – Zeldin 
  8. Rep. Carlos Giminez (R-FL) – McCarthy
  9. Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-TX) – Scalise
  10. Rep. Kay Granger (R-TX) – Scalise 
  11. Rep. John James (R-MI) – Cole
  12. Rep. Jen Kiggans (R-VA) – McCarthy 
  13. Rep. Nick LaLota (R-NY) – Zeldin
  14. Rep. Doug LaMalfa (R-CA) – McCarthy 
  15. Rep. Mike Lawler (R-NY) – McCarthy
  16. Rep. John Rutherford (R-FL) – Scalise 
  17. Rep. Mike Simpson (R-ID) – Scalise
  18. Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-IN) –  Massie
  19. Rep. John Rutherford (R-FL) – Scalise 
  20. Rep. Steve Womack (R-AR) – Scalise 

Jordan has made significant progress since Friday, when he received 152-55 votes when members were asked if they would vote for him on the floor. Following the weekend, he gained nearly 50 votes. 


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.