According to a familiar source, House Majority Leader Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) dropped out of the race for speaker on Tuesday, just hours after the conference nominated the Minnesota Republican for the top post.
Emmer withdrew his name from running after a group of Republicans made clear they would not support him in the House, making it virtually impossible for him to secure enough votes to win the gavel.
This also came after former President Trump issued a scathing statement in which he called Emmer a “RINO” and said voting for him would be “a tragic mistake.”
Emmer won the GOP nomination over House Republican Vice Chairman Mike Johnson (La.) in a secret vote 117-97, but in a secondary roll call vote, 26 Republicans voted present or for someone else, according to Lisa McClain, conference secretary the GOP House Conference in the House of Representatives (R-Mich.).
If all members present voted for a particular candidate, Emmer could only afford to lose four Republicans and still win the House speakership.
Republicans are now talking about next steps.
“He got a standing ovation,” Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Texas) said of Emmer. “And now we move on to the next phase.”
Emmer is the third Republican speaker candidate to miss the gavel in the last three weeks. The conference voted last week to remove Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) as its nominee after three failed attempts to win the gavel in the House. Previously, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) withdrew his name from running despite strong opposition from Jordan’s supporters.
The news that Emmer is dropping out of the race will catapult the House GOP conference back into first place as it resumes the search for a new speaker following the ouster of Rep. Kevin McCarthy, Republican of California.
Tuesday marked exactly three weeks since eight Republicans and Democrats voted to remove McCarthy from the presidency.
Updated at 5 p.m
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