Georgia congressman files short-lived bid to become House speaker

House Republicans are still seeking their next House speaker after Kevin McCarthy’s ouster, Steve Scalise withdrawal.
Georgia congressman Austin Scott filed a short-lived bid to become the next speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives on Friday.
Published: Oct. 13, 2023 at 12:44 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 13, 2023 at 1:56 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Georgia congressman Austin Scott filed a short-lived bid to become the next speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives on Friday.

It lasted all of a few hours before House Republicans nominated Ohio Representative Jim Jordan for the vacancy.

“Congressman Austin Scott has distinguished himself over a period of years by becoming an expert and a leader on agriculture issues – he’s from South Georgia where that’s the number one industry – and on armed services issues,” longtime Republican strategist Brian Robinson told Atlanta News First.

Robinson said whoever ends up securing the 217 votes needed to obtain the speakership, Republicans need to act quickly and in unity to restore confidence in the party.

“I think we’re at a place where there’s no obvious people, it’s going to take a lot of time to hash it out,” he said. “Give us something to vote for, give us some leadership and some vision and not look like nuts who can’t be trusted to govern the country.”

According to the Associated Press, Republicans convened behind closed doors again Friday as the search for a House speaker reached into a second week.

Two weeks ago, California Republican Kevin McCarthy became the first House speaker in American history to be ousted from his leadership position.

On Thursday, Majority Leader Steve Scalise ended his bid when it became clear hardline holdouts refused to back him.

As of Friday, only Scott and U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan from Ohio have declared candidates for the job.

Minutes after Scott’s announcement, U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk from Georgia’s 3rd congressional district said he’s supporting Jordan.

“I am working to advance Jim Jordan as the next Speaker of the House and I encourage my colleagues to support him as well,” Loudermilk said on X (formerly known as Twitter).

Last week, Scott joined with 44 other Republicans in calling for an overhaul to House rules after McCarthy’s ouster.

“The injustice we all witnessed cannot go unaddressed — lest we bear responsibility for the consequences that follow,” a letter signed by Scott said. “Our Conference must address fundamental changes to the structure of our majority to ensure success for the American people.”

Scott would become the fourth Georgian to serve as House speaker, following Democrats Howell Cobb (1849-1851) and Charles Frederick Crisp (1891-1895), and Republican Newt Gingrich (1995-1999).

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