In a move that has put California Republicans in swing districts in a challenging position, Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, a staunch ally of former President Trump, withdrew his bid to lead the U.S. House of Representatives. Jordan’s candidacy faced significant opposition from moderates and lawmakers in crucial districts.
Support from Unlikely Places
Surprisingly, all five California Republicans from districts that President Biden won in 2020 threw their weight behind Jordan during his three unsuccessful attempts to secure the speaker’s gavel. These Californian representatives include Young Kim of La Habra, David Valadao of Hanford, Mike Garcia of Santa Clarita, Michelle Steel of Seal Beach, and John Duarte of Modesto.
A Risky Move
However, their unwavering support for Jordan, a prominent figure in the MAGA movement and closely tied to former President Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, could prove to be a double-edged sword.
Democratic strategist and pollster Cornell Belcher warns that Jordan embodies much of what swing district voters have rejected. He states, "You have someone in Jim Jordan that encapsulates all that they dislike about MAGA and the Trump era."
Chaos in the House
The House of Representatives has been in disarray since a coalition of eight Republicans and Democrats removed Rep. Kevin McCarthy from the speaker’s chair. This historic ousting left the lower chamber unable to secure a majority to elect a speaker, further exacerbating the chaos in Washington. Voters are growing increasingly frustrated with this turmoil, as indicated by recent polls.
The Global Strategy Group’s poll, released by Navigator Research, reveals that 49% of GOP respondents disapprove of how congressional Republicans are handling their jobs, while 69% of all voters expressed disapproval. Moreover, the blame for a potential government shutdown is shifting towards the Republican Party, with 36% of Republicans polled on October 16th stating they would blame their own party, up from 32% on September 11th.
The MAGA Direction
Sarah Longwell, an anti-Trump Republican strategist, points out that Jim Jordan’s substantial support reflects a broader trend. She notes, "The fact that Jim Jordan has gotten up to 200 votes is a reflection: He and Trump represent the GOP. They are symptoms of the same problem. The party has moved hard into the MAGA direction."
With Jordan withdrawing from the race, at least five other Republicans, including Reps. Austin Scott, Kevin Hern, Pete Sessions, Byron Donalds, and Jack Bergman, have thrown their hats into the ring for the speaker’s position.
The plan to empower North Carolina Rep. Patrick T. McHenry to pass critical legislation has been suggested as an interim solution until a permanent leader is elected, but it has encountered resistance within the Republican Party.
Opposition and Backlash
Despite the pragmatic explanations provided by California Republicans for supporting Jordan, anti-Trump groups are mobilizing against them. Congressional Integrity Report, a Democrat-aligned nonprofit, released ads targeting Jordan’s ties to the right-wing of the Republican Party. The ads highlight Jordan’s involvement in denying the 2020 election results and his role in what is described as "Donald Trump’s attempted coup."
The House Jan. 6 committee also recognized Jordan as a significant player in the events surrounding the Capitol riot, further intensifying the scrutiny on those who endorsed him.
As Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan departs from the speaker race, California Republicans in swing districts find themselves at a crossroads. Their unwavering support for this Trump ally could have lasting repercussions, potentially affecting their standing with swing voters and further deepening the political divisions in the House of Representatives. The future of the Republican Party and its direction towards or away from the MAGA movement remains uncertain.
California Republicans in swing districts backed Trump ally Jordan for speaker—a decision that may have broader implications for the party and the nation’s political landscape.
The Challenges and Implications for California Swing District Republicans
Did Jim Jordan drop his bid for speaker?
Jim Jordan’s ambition to secure the position of Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives came to an abrupt halt on Friday. His fellow Republicans withdrew their support after a third unsuccessful vote on the House floor. This setback marked the end of his hardline conservative quest for the coveted role.
Why is Jim Jordan out?
Jim Jordan’s exit from the role of Speaker-designee within the House Republican Conference was a result of a secret ballot vote held behind closed doors. The vote outcome revealed 112 members against Jordan retaining the position, while 86 members were in favor of his continued designation.
Has Jim Jordan dropped out?
Republican Representative Jim Jordan has indeed withdrawn from his pursuit of becoming the Speaker of the House. This decision followed a closed-door meeting where House Republicans conducted a secret ballot to determine their support for Jordan’s candidacy. The outcome of this vote revealed that lawmakers did not wish for Jim Jordan to continue in the race for Speaker of the House, leading to his withdrawal.
What happened to Jim Jordan?
Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio faced a significant setback in his attempt to become Speaker of the House. On Tuesday, 20 Republicans withheld their support for him, resulting in his loss in the speaker bid. This prolonged a two-week battle that not only paralyzed the chamber but also highlighted the profound divisions within the Republican Party in the House.
How many votes did Jim Jordan get?
As of October 16, Jim Jordan had garnered approximately 200 votes. This vote tally is indicative of his significant support and underscores his role in representing the GOP, as noted by Sarah Longwell, an anti-Trump Republican strategist.
Is Jordan the Donald Trump of the House of Representatives?
Described as "the Donald Trump of the House of Representatives," Jim Jordan’s alignment with the former President’s policies and style has drawn attention. However, this comparison raises questions, especially considering the swing voters who have previously rejected Donald Trump. The Republican Party’s ongoing leadership struggles, highlighted by the removal of Rep. Kevin McCarthy, further underscore the challenges faced within the House.
Who is Jim Jordan?
Jim Jordan, a Republican representative from Ohio, was once selected by former President Trump as his choice to lead the U.S. House of Representatives. However, Jordan’s bid to become the Speaker of the House encountered formidable resistance from moderates and other lawmakers in crucial districts. His decision to end his pursuit of this leadership role has implications for California Republicans and the wider political landscape.