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FILE PHOTO: U.S. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) sits before a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S. June 21, 2023.

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Russia enters Biden impeachment fray

The “most corroborating evidence” for impeaching President Joe Biden came from a highly credible, human source, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) said in January. This week, a memo filed by the US Department of Justice claims that the source has “extensive foreign ties” with an all too familiar election meddler.

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Speakerless House shows weakness to US adversaries, says Rep. Mike Waltz
Speakerless House shows weakness to US adversaries, says Rep. Mike Waltz | GZERO World

Speakerless House shows weakness to US adversaries, says Rep. Mike Waltz

It's not a particularly comfortable moment to be a House Republican on Capitol Hill. Unable to agree on a Speaker, the House remains paralyzed and unable to do crucial work on a wide array of domestic and foreign policy priorities. Israel, of course, is at the top of that list. Republican Congressman Mike Waltz worries that the paralysis on Capitol Hill is playing right into the hands of America's adversaries.

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Speaker of the House of Representatives Pro Tem Patrick McHenry (Republican of North Carolina), left, talks with House Speaker nominee United States Representative Jim Jordan (Republican of Ohio) in the moments prior to the vote for Speaker of the House of Representatives, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, Wednesday, October 18, 2023. The House of Representatives has been without speaker since Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Kevin McCarthy (Republican of California) was ousted from the speakership on October 4, 2023, during a vote initiated by United States Representative Matt Gaetz (Republican of Florida), and led by a small group of fellow Republicans.

Rod Lamkey / CNP/Sipa USA via Reuters

Are Republicans giving up on electing a speaker?

Having failed to win the backing of the 217 Republican members he needed to become speaker of the US House of Representatives in two rounds of voting, Jim Jordan of Ohio announced Thursday morning that he would not call for a third vote. He did not, however, withdraw his name from future consideration. For now, he remains the official Republican Party nominee for speaker.

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Oct 18, 2023; Washington, DC, USA; Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio is seen on the House floor as lawmakers hold a second vote to elect a new speaker in Washington.

Jack Gruber-USA TODAY via Reuters

The road ahead for House Republicans

With the current balance of power in the US House of Representatives, no Republican can become speaker without winning at least 217 of the party’s 221 members. Jim Jordan of Ohio became the latest to give it a shot, but he fell short by 20 votes on Tuesday and then by 22 votes on Wednesday.

These numbers suggest he’s not going to get there. Some Republicans who voted for others fear hardliner Jordan would endanger their chances of winning reelection in moderate districts. Some dislike Jordan personally. There’s also probably some overlap between these two groups. These are the lawmakers who have blocked Jordan’s path.

Given the fates of ousted Speaker Kevin McCarthy of California and failed wannabe replacement Steve Scalise of Louisiana, it appears no one can unite this GOP House caucus. At least for now.

There is an alternative. Once again, the need to respond to the Israel crisis and to bargain with Democrats to avoid yet another threatened government shutdown next month has reignited talk that Patrick McHenry of North Carolina, now acting as the temporary speaker, will be given the job for some set period (perhaps one to three months) while Republicans try again to work out their differences.

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, came up short in his bid to win the House Speaker post on Tuesday.

Craig Hudson-USA TODAY via Reuters

Jordan’s shot for the speaker, close to no avail

One vote down, co-founder of the Freedom Caucus Jim Jordan is still 17 votes shy of the 217 votes needed to become the next speaker of the House of Representatives.

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Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) presides over the House Judiciary Committee


Speaker race: Jordan might get there

As the week began, it seemed unlikely Jim Jordan of Ohio, the Republican nominee for Speaker of the House, could win the near unanimous support within his party he needed to win the job. But on Monday, his fortunes appeared to shift.

Endorsements from three crucial members – Mike Rogers of Alabama, Ann Wagner of Missouri and Ken Calvert of California – sharply raised expectations that House Republicans can get to yes and end their crisis.

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Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, speaks to reporters after departing from a GOP caucus meeting working to formally elect a new speaker of the House.

USA TODAY NETWORK via Reuters Connect

Speaker snafu hobbles House

The US House of Representatives has now gone 14 days without an elected speaker. After Republican Steve Scalise of Louisiana abandoned his bid due to lack of support, Jim Jordan of Ohio became the second Republican nominated in the past week to run for House speaker, beating Rep. Austin Scott, of Georgia, in a closed-door vote on Friday. Democrats, meanwhile, support House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, of New York.

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U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks at a joint press conference with South Korean Defense Minister Lee Jong-sup in Seoul, South Korea, 31 January 2023.

Jeon Heon-Kyun/Pool via REUTERS

What We’re Watching: Pentagon leak fallout, Manhattan DA sues House Republicans, new source of tension in Ethiopia

The fog of leaks

Fallout continues from the leak of secret US documents related to the war in Ukraine. The leaked info suggests that Egypt, one of the world’s largest recipients of US military aid, planned to secretly supply Russia with tens of thousands of rockets for use in Ukraine and that the United Arab Emirates, also a key US ally, would help Russia work against US and UK intelligence. Egypt and the UAE say these reports are false.

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