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October 05, 2023 | In The News

Calls mount for ‘House Speaker Donald Trump,’ as lawmaker claims he can best ‘unite’ GOP

FOX NEWS — Calls continue to mount for Donald Trump to be nominated speaker of the House as some argue that only the former president could unite divided Republicans.

Rep. Greg Steube, R-Fla., told FOX News on Wednesday that Trump would be the perfect candidate to coalesce Republicans behind common policy objectives after Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., was stripped of the gavel Tuesday.

“We need somebody to unite our conference. And I honestly believe that he’s the only person that can do that,” Steube told “The Story.”

“He is the America First agenda. We need the America First agenda to be displayed in the House of Representatives.”

Steube said two other individuals floated for the speakership are respectable lawmakers who would do a good job, but he said the math may work more in Trump’s favor than Reps. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and Steve Scalise, R-La.

“The challenge is going to be you’re going to have people that are don’t want to support Jim for whatever reason or don’t want to support Scalise for whatever reasons. And you’ve seen all of this play out on the floor. You have to get to 218 [votes]. Nobody can lose four votes,” he said.

If Republicans splinter too much from a single candidate and the 212 Democrats remain united behind House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries of New York in a finalized roll call, the Democrat could win the speakership of a GOP-majority house based simply on math.

Jordan formally dispatched a “Dear Colleague” letter announcing his intention to run for speaker, while Steube was joined by a handful of other lawmakers and Republican figures in touting the idea of “House Speaker Donald Trump.”

Rep. Troy Nehls, R-Texas, pledged late Tuesday to formally nominate Trump when the House next meets. Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C. — who holds an acting “Speaker Pro Tempore” role — indicated the chamber will not reconvene until next Tuesday.

Nehls called Trump the “greatest president of my lifetime” and touted his record, saying the former president will “Make the House Great Again.”

In a late-night tweet, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., also pledged to support Trump, saying he will be the one to fulfill many of conservatives’ policy priorities.

However, one Democrat alluded to Trump’s ongoing legal troubles, citing a House rule passed by the Republican majority last year that may bar him from attaining the speakership.

Rep. Sean Casten of Illinois pointed to House Republican Conference Rule 26(a) for the 118th Congress, which stipulates a member of Republican leadership must step aside if indicted on a felony charge that could result in a prison sentence of two or more years.

Asked about his interest in taking the speaker’s gavel, Trump told reporters outside a New York City courtroom Wednesday that he is focused on his presidential bid, touting his wide lead over second-place Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“A lot of people have asked me about it,” he added.

McHenry and Reps. Tom Emmer, R-Minn.; Kevin Hern, R-Okla.; Mike Johnson, R-La.; Tom Cole, R-Okla.; Jodey Arrington, R-Texas; and former Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y., have also been floated as House Speaker candidates.