…and decide he’d like to be Speaker of the House, and shortly following that decision he’s going to have that job.
That’s the inescapable conclusion you come to if you believe this…
House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) had been planning to call up on the House floor last week a measure from Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) that would have removed him as Speaker of the House if it succeeded—intending to embarrass Meadows—but abandoned the plan after his entire leadership structure learned that they did not have the votes to re-elect him as Speaker before the August recess.
“[House Majority Leader Kevin] McCarthy was making phone calls—he was whipping it—and so was [House Majority Whip] Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA),” a senior conservative movement leader who’s had many personal and direct discussions with various House GOP members about this told Breitbart News in an interview last week.
“I know members personally who were called by Steve Scalise. So they had the entire leadership whip team frantically making phone calls to members to whip the vote because they wanted to attempt to embarrass Meadows and call the vote [on Wednesday last week] so it’s not hanging over Boehner’s head.
“What they found out was the exact opposite. They found out bad things would happen, that literally they would be calling the vote without knowing what would happen. Therefore, they did not call the vote and now they have this issue hanging over John Boehner’s head for the next five weeks.”
Jordan is the chairman of the Freedom Caucus, the informal conservative group within the House formed as a power base to challenge the current leadership, and he’s the former head of the Republican Study Committee which was, some argue, corrupted after Scalise took it over from him.
It’s Jordan who has the best shot of unseating Boehner. His refusal to step forward as a candidate for the Speaker’s job is the only thing keeping the current Speaker in that post at present in our opinion. Conservatives keep putting forward attempts to get rid of Boehner and they all fail because you can’t replace something with nothing.
Boehner does need to be replaced. He’s a weak leader and he’s never truly been in control of the direction of the House. He isn’t pushing a strong agenda and he’s not driving any conservative policy with tactics reasonably calculated to produce policy.
Republican voters, who gave Boehner his speakership in the 2010 elections and the largest majority the GOP has had in the House in decades, see this and are fed up. They’re sick of the Obama administration pushing far-left policies without being effectively blocked by Congress. And the reaction is the same as you’d see from fans of a football team filled with high-profile talent which nevertheless gets blown out every week – they want the coach fired.
If you’re a conservative from Louisiana all this has to give you mixed feelings. After all, nobody can be particularly impressed with Boehner as the Speaker and the idea a more effective and energetic leader could be found has to be an exciting one.
But the problem is that we in this state are invested in Scalise. It’s good for Louisiana that he’s the majority whip, and if Boehner is run out of his job Scalise is more than likely going to get run out of the Whip post. Which would be a sacrifice.
Scalise as the Whip is an interesting thing in and of itself. Prior to his getting that job you would have said he was a lot more conservative than Boehner and the House leadership and that he wasn’t a great fit for it as a result – but it was good to see him get it both because of the clout Louisiana gets as a result of having a member of the delegation so high in the leadership and also out of the hope that a strong conservative in the leadership might influence the agenda.
And it isn’t totally inaccurate to say that Scalise has moved the leadership somewhat to the right. But not to a degree that the party’s base voters around the country are satisfied with. Congress’ approval ratings show that not only do Democrats hate Boehner’s leadership, which was always a given, but the Republicans aren’t satisfied either.
Scalise’s rise in Congress’ leadership is thus hostage at this point to Boehner’s continued survival. If Jordan were to move up the chances of Scalise hanging on as Whip aren’t great unless he was able to cut a deal – a risky and uncertain proposition at best.
Which means something to pay attention to as this fall progresses and Boehner teeters on the brink of losing his Speakership is Scalise’s future.
Because if Jordan does wake up and decide it’s time to make his move, and Scalise is a casualty of the resulting change, we now have our potential frontrunner for the Senate seat that would open up should David Vitter be elected governor this fall. If Scalise isn’t the whip anymore, then it makes sense for him to look for the next best mode of advance – and running for the Senate would then make a great deal of sense.
A Scalise-Charles Boustany-John Kennedy-John Fleming Senate race next year would be a free-for-all on the Republican side, but Scalise would likely have the inside track on fundraising and the best geographic base to work from. His alliance with Vitter could also work to his benefit, though whether Vitter would appoint him to fill the seat is a good question.
This is all pure speculation, but the failure of Boehner’s whip team to generate enough support within the House GOP caucus for a vote of confidence is a suggestion that the wheels could be turning in Washington. The question is how fast those wheels are turning in Jordan’s head.