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After Jordan Fails Again, Valadao Backs Idea of a Temporary House Speaker



Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) fell well short of winning enough votes to become Speaker again on Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2023. (AP File)
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After watching the Speaker candidate he supported through two rounds of balloting fall short, Rep. David Valadao (R-Hanford) is backing a resolution that would empower Speaker Pro-Tempore Patrick McHenry to act as Speaker of the House through Jan. 3, 2024.

“For the last two weeks, we have been unable to work on funding the government, securing the border, or supporting our ally Israel because eight Republicans joined with every single House Democrat to bring our government to a halt,” said Valadao in reference to the ouster of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield) as Speaker.

“Each day that passes without a Speaker of the House is a national security risk. I voted for the Republican Conference’s nominee for Speaker because we must get back to work, and we cannot do that until we have a Speaker.”

Though regarded in some quarters as a moderate Republican, Valadao backed the candidacy of Donald Trump ally and Biden election denier Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) in voting on Tuesday and Wednesday.

After Jordan again failed to gain a majority of the votes cast on Wednesday, Valadao announced his support for Rep. Dave Joyce’s resolution calling for McHenry to temporarily run the House.

Republicans control the House with a 221-212 majority.

“After today’s votes, it is clear that the current candidates do not have the support necessary to become Speaker,” Valadao said. “We do not have more time to waste, which is why I support empowering Speaker Pro-Tempore Patrick McHenry so we can immediately reopen the House while we work to find consensus.”

Gingrich, Boehner Back a Temporary Speaker

The novel concept of boosting the interim speaker’s role has traction with former GOP speakers Newt Gingrich and John Boehner.

Gingrich said while he likes Jordan, he has “no faith” that the nominee can be elected as Speaker.

“We can’t sit around and suck our thumbs and hope the world will wait until the House Republicans get their act together,” Gingrich told Fox News’ Sean Hannity on his show.

Boehner reposted Gingrich’s views saying, “I agree,” on social media.

Valadao supported McCarthy as Speaker through 15 rounds of votes in January and continued to support him when the motion to vacate was brought against him two weeks ago.

However, McCarthy paved the road for his own downfall by giving in to the demands of a handful of hard-right Republicans to gain the Speakership.

Wednesday’s tally was 199 for Jordan, 212 for House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-New York), and 22 for someone else.

“A Speaker has not been elected,” said McHenry, who then declared the House in recess.

22 Republicans Vote Against Jordan

The 22 Republicans who blocked Jordan’s ascent to Speaker:
    • Rep. Don Bacon (R-Neb.) voted for McCarthy.
    • Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) voted for Rep. Byron Donalds (R-Fla.)
    • Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) voted for Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn.).
    • Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer (R-Ore.) voted for McCarthy.
    • Rep. Anthony D’Esposito (R-N.Y.) voted for former Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.).
    • Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) voted for Rep. Steve Scalise (R-Louisiana)
    • Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-Texas) voted for Rep. Mike Garcia (R-Calif.)
    • Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-Ga.) voted for Scalise.
    • Rep. Andrew Garbarino (R-N.Y.) voted for Zeldin.
    • Rep. Carlos Gimenez (R-Fla.) voted for McCarthy.
    • Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-Texas) voted for Scalise.
    • Rep. Kay Granger (R-Texas) voted for Scalise.
    • Rep. John James (R-Texas) voted for former Rep. Candice Miller (R-Mich.).
    • Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Pa.) voted for Scalise.
    • Rep. Jen Kiggans (R-Va.) voted for McCarthy.
    • Rep. Nick LaLota (R-N.Y.) voted for Zeldin.
    • Rep. Mike Lawler (R-N.Y.) voted for McCarthy.
    • Rep. Marianette Miller Meeks (R-Iowa) voted for Granger.
    • Rep. John Rutherford (R-Fla.) voted for Scalise.
    • Rep. Mike Simpson (R-Idaho) voted for Scalise.
    • Rep. Pete Stauber (R-Minn.) voted for Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.)
    • Rep. Steve Womack (R-Ark.) voted for Scalise.

(Associated Press and The Hill contributed to this story.)

Bill McEwen is news director and columnist for GV Wire. He joined GV Wire in August 2017 after 37 years at The Fresno Bee. With The Bee, he served as Opinion Editor, City Hall reporter, Metro columnist, sports columnist and sports editor through the years. His work has been frequently honored by the California Newspapers Publishers Association, including authoring first-place editorials in 2015 and 2016. Bill and his wife, Karen, are proud parents of two adult sons, and they have two grandsons. You can contact Bill at 559-492-4031 or at Send an Email

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