The Republican Party is facing an uncertain future following the failed bid of Representative Jim Jordan to become the House Speaker. After Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Minority Leader Steve Scalise withdrew from the race, an array of candidates have emerged as potential replacements for the role.
The new trio of candidates include Representative Elise Stefanik, Representative Chip Roy, and Representative Tom Reed. Stefanik is the first female prospective candidate for the role, as well as the youngest at 36. Believed to be favored by McCarthy and other top House Republicans, Stefanik is most described as a moderate Republican with relative regard for bipartisanship.
Roy, like Stefanik, is a relatively young 39 year old. While he has been an outspoken critic of violent protests and unrest in response to racial disputes, he has also expressed support for the Black Lives Matter movement. His candidacy has been met with significant support from some far-right Republicans like former President Donald Trump.
Reed, the last of the three candidates announced, is expected to be a compromise between the moderate Stefanik and far-right Roy. At 54 years old, he brings the most experience to the race as Chairman of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus. Notably, he previously announced his withdrawal from the race but re-entered the race as House Republican leaders worked on negotiations regarding the speakership role.
As of now, House Republicans are planning to reconvene Monday with an expected decision on who will be the next House Speaker. At this point, the majority of the House has yet to commit to a single candidate, leaving the future of the House Republican leadership uncertain.
Nevertheless, all three candidates possess their own unique set of experiences and perspectives that are expected to be brought to the table as negotiations proceed. With different elements of both the Democratic and Republican Party dissatisfied with each prospective candidate, the chosen Speaker will face an uphill battle in being approved by the chamber.
No matter the outcome of negotiations come Monday, one thing is for certain: the next House Speaker will be highly scrutinized by the majority of the House in order to keep balance between Democratic and Republican interests. With an array of prospective candidates, the result of the negotiation will remain to be seen.