Former President Donald Trump endorsed House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) to be the next Speaker of the House after a small number of Republicans teamed up with the entire House Democrat Caucus to oust Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) from the position this week.
The endorsement came after reports from Thursday said that Trump was considering traveling to Capitol Hill next week to see if he could unite the caucus ahead of their next vote for speaker.
“Congressman Jim Jordan has been a STAR long before making his very successful journey to Washington, D.C., representing Ohio’s 4th Congressional District,” Trump wrote on social media. “Respected by all, he is now Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. As President, I had the honor of presenting Jim with our Country’s highest civilian award, The Presidential Medal of Freedom.”
“So much is learned from sports, and Jim was a master!” Trump continued. “While attending Graham High School, he won State Championships all four years, a rarity, and compiled an amazing 156-1 record. At the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Jim became a two-time NCAA Division l Wrestling Champion. He won his 1985-86 NCAA Championship Matches in his weight class.”
“Jim has a masters degree in Education from Ohio State University & a Law Degree from Capital University,” he concluded. “He is STRONG on Crime, Borders, our Military/Vets, & 2nd Amendment. Jim, his wife, Polly, & family are outstanding – He will be a GREAT Speaker of the House, & has my Complete & Total Endorsement!”
Before Trump made his endorsement, numerous top Republicans signaled that they were backing Jordan over House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA).
“I am proud to support Jim Jordan as our next speaker of the House because of his leadership skills, professionalism, and the fact that he will be able to unite our conference,” said House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Turner (R-OH).
Some of the others that backed Jordan included Homeland Security Chairman Mark Green (R-TN), Reps. Thomas Massie (R-KY), Byron Donalds (R-FL), Ronny Jackson (R-TX), and many more.
Trump’s endorsement squashed rumors promoted by some of Trump’s surrogates — and later teased by the former president himself — that he could be interested in serving as Speaker of the House, even though the House has never elected a speaker from outside of Congress.
Because House Republicans have a razor-thin majority, the former president would have to receive a near-unanimous vote from House Republicans, which would be difficult as there were signs that he would face opposition from within the party and not securing enough votes to become speaker could harm his image on the presidential campaign.
There also would have been issues with Trump becoming speaker because the Republican Party’s own conference rules dictate that GOP leaders are required to step down “if indicted for a felony for which a sentence of two or more years imprisonment may be imposed.” Trump currently faces 91 felony counts spread across four indictments.
The Republican Party rules are in line with policies that Democrats also have. Last month, Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) was required to step down as chairman of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee after being charged with multiple felonies stemming from an alleged bribery scheme.