What to know about potential Speaker hopeful Tom Emmer
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After Republicans voted Friday to no longer back House Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) as its Speaker nominee, the House is scrambling to find a new candidate.
That decision came after Jordan failed for a third time to garner the 217 votes needed to secure the gavel.
Several GOP members have since announced that they are running for the role, while others are spending the weekend making calls about potentially entering the race. The next nominee will be the third in 17 days — after a historic vote ousted former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.)
House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) was first nominated for the post, but resistance to his candidacy forced him to withdraw a day later.
The field of those vying to be the new nominee is quickly becoming crowded. The House will return on Monday evening to choose a new nominee.
One of the rumored hopefuls is House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-Minn.).
Here’s what you need to know about Emmer.
Time in the Minnesota House of Representatives
Before being elected to Congress, Emer served three terms as a member of the Minnesota House of Representatives from 2005 to 2011.
He served on several committees while in state office, including: Finance; Health Care; and Human Services Policy and Oversight, and the State and Local Government Operations Reform, Technology and Elections.
Emmer announced in 2009 that he would run for governor — even receiving an endorsement from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R).
The gubernatorial race attracted national attention because Target donated $150,000 to a political action committee that paid for advertisements supporting Emmer’s run. However, protests erupted over the donation.
Emmer ultimately lost to his Democratic opponent Mark Dayton, who served in the office until 2019 — by less than a percentage point.
Two terms running the NRCC as a member of the House
Emmer officially announced he would seek the Republican nomination for Minnesota’s sixth district after former Rep. Michele Bachmann announced she would vacate her seat.
He received endorsement by several conservative groups, including the Tea Party Express and Young Americans for Liberty, as well as many Minnesota legislators.
He beat out Joe Perske in the general election, earning 56 percent of the vote.
Emmer then served a full two terms as the Chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) from 2019 to 2023.
Elected as House Majority Whip
When Republicans gained control of the House in the 2022 midterm elections, Emmer ran for the House Majority Whip, successfully earning the coveted spot once held by Scalise..
Whips are responsible for assisting the party leadership in bringing the party’s bills to the House floor, counting votes on key legislation and maintaining communication between the leadership.
“It is an honor to be entrusted by my colleagues with the role of Majority Whip. Now the hard work begins,” Emmer said in a statement released at the time. “It’s time to unite our conference and deliver on our promises to the American people.”
Emmer, a former hockey coach, has said being Whip is “the best coaching job I’ve ever had.”
After 15 rounds of voting to elect McCarthy as Speaker during his first week as in the role, Emmer said in May that he was prepared to change the minds of the GOP and gather members to work together.
The Whip’s office has also reportedly become a key gathering place for Republicans throughout the year as they have grappled with internal division.
Rumors swirl of a Speaker bid
After the Republican conference pushed Jordan aside in a secret-ballot vote Friday, several people have stepped forward to be McCarthy’s successor.
Emmer has reportedly made calls for a potential Speaker bid, according to previous reporting by The Hill. If true, he is likely to emerge as a frontrunner.
The Whip would be the highest-ranking lawmaker to jockey for the position, after Scalise withdrew.
He’s endured leadership races in the past, a fact that could help him secure the gavel.
McCarthy endorses him after Jordan failures
Even before Emmer has officially thrown his hat in the ring, he received a huge boost. McCarthy endorsed him as his successor.
“He is the right person for the job. He can unite the conference. He understands the dynamics of the conference,” McCarthy told Punchbowl News. “He also understands what it takes to win and keep a majority.”
Emmer has also received support from another GOP ally: Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.). Buck refused to support Jordan on the House floor, casting his ballot for Emmer instead.
But, the race is still anyone’s game. Members have until noon on Sunday to file their candidacy.
FAQs: Tom Emmer – Potential Speaker of the House
Q: Who is Tom Emmer?
A: Tom Emmer is a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives, representing Minnesota’s 6th congressional district. He has served in this capacity since 2015. Before that, Emmer was a member of the Minnesota House of Representatives from 2005 to 2011.
Q: Why is Emmer a Potential Speaker Hopeful?
A: Emmer is gaining recognition within the Republican Party and is considered a potential successor to Kevin McCarthy as Speaker of the House. He is known for his conservative values, strong work ethic, and positive relationships with his colleagues. Emmer’s rapport with former President Donald Trump also bolsters his candidacy.
Q: What Are Emmer’s Strengths and Weaknesses as a Potential Speaker?
A: Emmer’s strengths as a potential Speaker include his extensive experience in government, conservative principles, and his capacity to work effectively. He is recognized as a skilled communicator and consensus-builder. However, some view his limited experience in leadership roles and his close association with Donald Trump as potential weaknesses.
Q: What Are Emmer’s Chances of Becoming Speaker?
A: Emmer’s prospects of becoming SpeaWhat to know about potential Speaker hopeful Tom Emmerker are promising, but not guaranteed. He will face tough competition from other Republican candidates like Elise Stefanik and Jim Jordan. Nonetheless, Emmer benefits from his experience, conservative background, and strong ties to Donald Trump.
Q: What Are Emmer’s Key Priorities If He Becomes Speaker?
A: If elected Speaker, Emmer is expected to focus on priorities such as tax reduction, fiscal responsibility, and the promotion of conservative social policies. Additionally, he is likely to emphasize oversight and accountability of the Biden administration.
Q: What Are the Implications of Emmer Becoming Speaker for the Republican Party and the United States?
A: Emmer’s potential Speaker role would signify a rightward shift within the Republican Party. As a staunch conservative, his leadership could lead to increased political polarization and potentially hinder bipartisan cooperation in American politics.
Q: What Should We Watch for in the Coming Months as Emmer Prepares for a Potential Speaker Bid?
A: As Emmer gears up for a potential Speaker bid, it’s essential to monitor his fundraising efforts, ability to garner support from fellow lawmakers, and his continuing relationship with Donald Trump. Furthermore, Emmer will need to articulate a clear vision for the Republican Party and his intended approach to House leadership if he were to become Speaker.