Image 01 Image 03

Speaker Scrum Update: Paul Ryan? Newt? Plus—We’re Being Trolled

Speaker Scrum Update: Paul Ryan? Newt? Plus—We’re Being Trolled


I think it’s safe to say that, as of right now, the situation in the House of Representatives is officially through the looking glass.

John Boehner’s pending resignation threw the conference for a loop; when Kevin McCarthy announced he would not run for Speaker, things unraveled. The caucus is in chaos, and without a presumptive leader, we’re wading in a sea of speculation about who should—or is even competent to—take the gavel.

Jason Chaffetz’s surprise bid for Speaker caused a buzz amongst conservatives—but also drew fire from fellow Republicans who claim that the young lawmaker hasn’t proved his conservative bona fides.

From The Hill:

Rep. Darrell Issa (Calif.) on Friday had harsh words for his successor to lead the House Oversight Committee, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (Utah), as the two Republicans eye the Speaker’s gavel.

“Look, Jason is a good man, an honorable man, but he got his job by going to Boehner and saying he would shut down that rancor that was going on, he would go along, get along — and he’s done that; he put shining pictures of Utah on the wall — and he basically stopped doing it,” Issa said during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

Rep. Darrell Issa (Calif.) on Friday had harsh words for his successor to lead the House Oversight Committee, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (Utah), as the two Republicans eye the Speaker’s gavel.

“Look, Jason is a good man, an honorable man, but he got his job by going to Boehner and saying he would shut down that rancor that was going on, he would go along, get along — and he’s done that; he put shining pictures of Utah on the wall — and he basically stopped doing it,” Issa said during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

Issa is also reportedly mulling a bid for Speaker, as is Florida Representative Dan Webster. No one candidate, however, has managed to coalesce support from his colleagues.

The uproar has apparently caused a groundswell of support for former Vice Presidential nominee and Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan to step up—but he has repeatedly declined:

But Ryan said despite being “grateful for the encouragement,” he will not be running.

The problem now is there aren’t many people who want to lead a party that is this divided, reports CBS News correspondent Nancy Cordes.

McCarthy’s decision left lawmakers reeling, including his two opponents.

One, Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah, said he was “absolutely stunned. [I] did not see that coming.”

Some lawmakers were even in tears following McCarthy’s abrupt announcement, upset that what should have been an orderly transition of power has descended into what many of them called chaos.

McCarthy had faced opposition from the same 40 hard-line conservatives who wanted to unseat the current speaker, John Boehner.

But don’t worry. Even if Ryan continues to refuse the chair, there’s always…Newt Gingrich?

Newt called in to Sean Hannity’s show to talk about the devolving situation. When Hannity floated the idea of a return to the chamber, Newt punted—and then said that, if presented with 218 votes, no citizen could “turn down that kind of challenge.”


“If you were to say to me 218 have called you up and given you their pledge, obviously no citizen could ever turn down that kind of challenge,” Gingrich said, as first reported by the Washington Free Beacon.

He compared the scenario to George Washington coming out of retirement to become America’s first president.
“This is why George Washington came out of retirement — because there are moments you can’t avoid,” Gingrich said.

“Remember the McCarthy problem — it’s not getting a majority of the conference, it’s getting 218 votes,” Gingrich said.

Gingrich said he’s more likely to serve as a consultant to the House GOP than as its Speaker. He said it would “be more practical” to sit down with the GOP conference “and try to help them think this through.”

“I think this is a conference-wide problem,” said Gingrich.

Rest assured—Democrats are enjoying every minute of this:

Even Charlie Rangel tried to troll Republicans. (Spoiler: it didn’t accomplish much outside of making us hungry):

Meanwhile, California Democrat Mark Takano took matters into his own hands by posting the position on Craigslist.

Don’t worry—the listing never went live.

So that’s where we’re at. John Boehner has said that, absent 218 votes for another candidate, he’ll remain in place until his caucus can pull it together and agree on their next fearless leader.

Follow Amy on Twitter @ThatAmyMiller


Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.



I keep seeing this line, that the Republicans are in chaos, it’s just terrible. Do people really hate democracy so much?

    JackRussellTerrierist in reply to irv. | October 9, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    This is Boehners’ swan song, which is titled, “Adios, M-F!”

    What’s happening is good. From disarray and chaos comes clarity and coalescence. I’d rather have chaos than iron-fisted RINOism anyway.

      Sammy Finkelman in reply to JackRussellTerrierist. | October 9, 2015 at 3:39 pm

      This is Boehners’ swan song, which is titled, “Adios, M-F!”

      As chico marx would say: “that’sa right.”

      Boehner will no longer have to work Monday to Friday.

      That may be the drawback for Paul Ryan, who would not be almost never be able to be in Washington only from Tuesday to Thursday. his family is in Wsiconsin.

    No,just scummy, corrupt a-holes like Boehner, who stab their constitutes in the back. Amongst others in high office, and those scummy, corrupt a-holes like Hillary Clinton who seek it.

      JackRussellTerrierist in reply to | October 10, 2015 at 4:13 am

      Speaking of scummy, corrupt A-holes, how about Trump for speaker? Think of it. He could demonstrate his Terrific negotiation skills. He could show us the extent to which he, as a newly-minted CLAIMED Republican, has embraced conservative ideas and policies, and his full, heart-and-soul dedication to actually ADVANCING all things conservative rather than just shucking and jiving about them. Not only would he be putting some meat on those conservative bones he claims to be bloviating from, he’d save millions in advertising because he’d have the bully pulpit anytime he wanted it. He’d like those savings, because he’s really, really rich. I know because he said so. A thousand times.

      He could elucidate us as to how erudite and wise he has become about budgetary matters, such as what the costs of nationalized health care would be, about constitutional rights such as eminent domain and the Second Amendment. Most glowingly, we’d get to see his stunning brilliance on national security, foreign affairs and foreign threats – after he gets finished slobbering about how smart and TERRIFIC Putin is.

      I think we should encourage a twitter campaign to make it happen. Just tell Trump about it, and he’ll get the ball rolling – because he’s really, really smart. I know because he said so. A thousand times.

        Finally a good idea from you.
        For the wrong reasons quoted, of course.
        Trump as Speaker would be two heartbeats away from the Presidentcy.
        Should fate conspire to remove one and two, Donald would be Prez!
        That would save a lot of wasted Media time on more stupid debates
        Now if only Republicans could untangle themselves from chaos and back Trump, we’d be quickly on the right track!

          JackRussellTerrierist in reply to jayjerome66. | October 10, 2015 at 1:31 pm

          That wouldn’t negate the need for debates in any way. It would give Trump a record to run on; the lies, false promises, and phony conservatism would all be exposed to his loser supporters.

    cantor4massat4 in reply to irv. | October 9, 2015 at 6:48 pm

    The Democrats don’t have this problem because they do what they’re told to do.

    The author of this post, Amy Miller, embedded an excerpt from CBS, of all anti-Conservative pro-Socialism media sites, making that claim. Go figure.

    This is a trend with her political paradigm.

Frankly, I think it’s a sign of the health of the process that those who are clearly not going to consider all GOP points of view are dropping out. RINOs have tried to “marginalize” or flatly dismiss conservatives to their peril. Let’s face it, they need those who comprise 40% of their base to push a true GOP agenda. Otherwise, you might as well just hand Obama a blank check and call it a day.

    pesanteur in reply to phdwyphe. | October 9, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    I couldn’t agree more. This dynamism and revolt is extremely healthy; our Founders would view it as cleansing. Republicans should be embracing and celebrating it. But of course, this is the GOP, who (in exact inversion of the Left) see crisis in every opportunity.

    And yes, bring back Newt.

Deemocrats are SUCH assholes…!!!

    But but but…. they’re working to “…keep our economy running…” for the little guy!

    That, right thar, is the problem! When the stupid morons in DC think they are responsible for “keeping the economy running” then things will quickly go to shit.

      JackRussellTerrierist in reply to Paul. | October 9, 2015 at 3:33 pm

      They work against the economy and they KNOW it. It’s deliberate. Saying otherwise is just chum they throw out there for their ignorant, dysfunctional base who always believe them.

    jayjerome66 in reply to Ragspierre. | October 9, 2015 at 1:48 pm


NC Mountain Girl | October 9, 2015 at 12:15 pm

First, communication skills are a must and McCarthy clearly didn’t have them.

Second, the issue no one is focusing on is that part of this may based on age and ambition as well as ideology.

Much of the Republican Caucus is young and still in the process of sorting itself out. In McCarthy, Boehner pushed forward a young moderate who if elected Speaker was likely to be around for a long, long time. Paul Ryan is even younger. How well does this sit with members of the election classes of 2010 and 2014 who have ambitions?

I think the compromise will be an interim Speaker. Place in the Speaker’s chair someone like Webster who is 66 and is about to be redistricted into a very tough reelection or Kline, age 68, who has announced it his last term. Then in the interim before January, 2017 let the ambitious among the under 55 crowd sort their pecking order out among themselves behind the scenes.

Issa is an arab, I hardly expect him to support the jewish Chaffets. That’s the way I see it.

    jayjerome66 in reply to Lee Jan. | October 9, 2015 at 1:29 pm

    Chaffetz isn’t a Jew, or Jewish.
    Tho his father was Jewish, his mother was a Christain Scientist.
    There’s no evidence he practiced any Jewish beliefs as a kid, or attended Hebrew School or went to Temple on the High Hollidays. There’s no evidence the religious Twitter Bug even likes bagels and lox.

    He dumped both his parent’s religions at College in Utah and converted to Mormonism in his senior year. He’s as Jewish as a ham sandwich

    dunce1239 in reply to Lee Jan. | October 9, 2015 at 2:11 pm

    Issa has never displayed any anti-semetism. Jewish hate is not inherited blue eyes.

    tphillip in reply to Lee Jan. | October 9, 2015 at 3:14 pm

    Hey look! It’s one of the Ithaca antisemites. One of them finally learned how to read.

Henry Hawkins | October 9, 2015 at 1:22 pm

Getting tired of media hyperbole, the ‘chaos’ label in this case. The Speaker resigned. He’ll be replaced. nothing happening that hasn’t happened before – and fairly recently (‘recently’ depending on whether one’s acne has cleared up yet). There’s a process and it’s being followed. There is nothing chaotic about it.

What term shall they use if real chaos emerges?

    forksdad in reply to Henry Hawkins. | October 9, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    If they start caning each other on the house floor you’ll know we still haven’t passed historical levels of animosity and chaos.

    Right now it is clear there’s a disconnect between the elites and the core. The elites don’t like the little guy getting uppity and the core is sick of the elites colluding with the left.

    It’s a good time for the Republic. Maybe we’ll take our destiny back.

      Voyager in reply to forksdad. | October 10, 2015 at 2:45 am

      Pretty much. It bothers me just how much of the coverage is about how the Republican leadership needs to suppress its base if it want to win. If that is the echo chamber the party leadership is believing in, it is no wonder they can’t seem to get anything done.

    AZ_Langer in reply to Henry Hawkins. | October 9, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    Agree, Henry. It’s almost as if the media faction of the D party enjoy spewing garbage they think will hurt the Rs. Probably many of us see it as a positive sign and hope a much better choice will be made.

      Henry Hawkins in reply to AZ_Langer. | October 9, 2015 at 8:06 pm

      I expect anti-GOP hyperbole of the ‘media faction of the D party’ – that’s what they do – but I’m talking about LI, this article, and this isn’t the only conservative site parroting the ‘chaos’ pronouncement. This essentially same thing happened when Newt resigned as speaker. It was to go to Livingston, but he had an affair scandal, so it went instead to Hastert (I think. Please note I don’t remember what I had for lunch today). It wasn’t chaos then and it isn’t now. The process is infrequently needed, so it seems… exotic, I guess, to those who don’t remember previous speaker elections. But chaos? Yeesh.

    Valerie in reply to Henry Hawkins. | October 9, 2015 at 8:34 pm

    The Speaker resigned and the members are talking up a storm, which is exactly what you would expect, if they take their work seriously.

cantor4massat4 | October 9, 2015 at 1:26 pm

If Boehner wants Ryan, you know he’s a RINO. But to be sure, I checked his rating at Conservative Review and it’s an F. No wonder Romney chose him for VP.

Hoping the GOP selects a conservative who will push conservative issues rather than conceding to Socialist party demands. One minor example is that the House should structure this next budget for each individual federal department, into separate bills. Yeah, gee the horror, 12-budget bills to pass! The heavy work that Obama would have to do.

Let Obama veto each individual federal department budget bill. Were the House to present another so-called comprehensive federal budget, the all in one covering everything budget bill, Obama would gladly veto that comprehensive budget bill; the msm would shout that the GOP is shutting down the government.

Of course, to do this, the House would have to get McConnell to agree, and that might be a bridge too far.

    Sammy Finkelman in reply to Doug Wright. | October 9, 2015 at 3:43 pm

    The House can do that – in fact Paul Ryan probould o that – but the Senaate doesn’t have to and House Minority leader Harry reid has schemed to prevent it.

A vacancy is far better for the country than Boehner has been or Ryan or McCarthy would be. This is more a media made crisis than anything else. We don’t need a new SOH to sign surrender papers for Obama.

Paul Ryan – sellout, non-starter. Cannot be elected speaker. He’s trash.

In two years it will not matter as there will be another election and more old guard guys will be put to pasture.
the moving hand writes and having writ
not all your piety nor wit
can erase a line of it

Charlie “Rankle” is a Democrat stroke waiting to happen.

Ted Cruz for Speaker of the House so he can laugh in Yertle the Turtle’s face before he sends him the articles of impeachment.