House Speaker John Boehner scheduled an election for Republicans to pick his successor on October 28, according to several GOP lawmakers who attended a Wednesday morning party meeting.
The decision to set an election date signals that Boehner is confident that Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan will agree to run for speaker.
Ryan, currently the House Ways and Means Committee chairman, said Tuesday that he was open to running, but only if certain conditions were met. He’s seeking the full support of the GOP conference, including important factions of conservatives.
The vote on the House floor will happen on the following day.
While the move by Boehner strategically serves to jam opposition to Ryan and force lawmakers to get on board with him quickly, conservatives who are still hesitant on Ryan noted Boehner has overplayed his hands before — including delaying elections after Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy exited the race.
“John Boehner previously set elections. Those can change on a moment’s notice,” said Rep. Mo Brooks, a House Freedom Caucus member from Alabama. “There’s a plethora of candidates for speaker of the House out there … this may take awhile but we need to do whatever’s necessary to make sure we make the right decision.”