The announcement comes the morning after a meeting among the full House Republican conference
Boehner's surprise announcement last Friday that he would resign set off a scramble inside the House GOP conference for a new leadership team
The election to replace House Speaker John Boehner will take place Oct. 8, the Ohio Republican announced Wednesday morning.
“After consulting with our conference, a large majority of our members have made clear they want these elections held next week,” Boehner, who will leave Congress on Oct. 30, said in a written statement on Wednesday. “With their considerations in mind, the House leadership elections will take place on Thursday, October 8.”
The announcement comes the morning after a meeting among the full House Republican conference, though Boehner was not there, in the basement of the Capitol on Tuesday evening, where a number of members discussed the timeline for elections.
A handful, including members of the conservative arm of the party that helped bring about Boehner’s departure through continued challenges to his leadership, spoke out in favor of putting off leadership elections for some time.
“There are many of us, myself included, that would like to see this play out a little longer,” Pennsylvania Rep Scott Peters said Wednesday morning on WBAL.
After the Tuesday meeting, House Freedom Caucus member Rep. Raul Labrador, of Idaho, suggested the election shouldn’t take place “for a couple of weeks,” and South Dakota Rep. Kristi Noem said there’s time with Boehner serving until the end of October.
“I believed it was something we should be a little more thoughtful about,” Noem told reporters. “There’s some people that definitely want to get it over with. I mean this is kind of misery, going through these leadership elections. … People are weary of the constant campaigning for leadership positions, so that weariness would lead people to want to be done, but I think we’ll be much more successful in the long run if we took our time”
Boehner’s surprise announcement last Friday that he would resign set off a scramble inside the House GOP conference for a new leadership team.
The No. 2 House Republican, Rep Kevin McCarthy, R-California, is the front-runner for the speakership, but an intensely competitive battle for his job as Majority Leader is in full swing.
Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, the current No. 3 Republican leader, is running against House Budget Chairman Tom Price of Georgia, but continued unrest among House conservatives makes it unclear whether another candidate might join the race.
The right flank of the party has been a thorn in Boehner’s side, but the conservative House Freedom Caucus has yet to offer up one of its own as a candidate for a leadership post.
Many of the lawmakers have said they’re looking to influence the future of the conference through the commitments leadership candidates make to them during the elections process – part of why time would be on their side.
“If we’re going to have new bodies with the same old process, it doesn’t matter who the person is in that position,” Labrador said. “it really should be about what we’re going to do to change the process here, so everybody can feel empowered in the process.”