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House GOP taps Ukraine aid skeptic for speaker

Rep. Jim Jordan has been picked by fellow Republicans as their new nominee to head up the House

US Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) was nominated by Republicans on Friday to lead the House of Representatives. Jordan is an outspoken critic of continuous US military aid to Ukraine and has repeatedly urged the country to focus on domestic problems instead.

The new nominee, who is endorsed by ex-US President Donald Trump, won the closed-door vote, which had pitted him against Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA). “I think I can unite the conference, I think I can tell the country what we’re doing and why it matters,” Jordan told reporters ahead of the vote. 

Earlier this week, Jordan narrowly lost the nomination bid to Majority Leader Steve Scalise. The latter, however, dropped out of the race for speaker on Thursday when it became apparent that he would not be able to secure the 217 votes needed to secure the gavel of the House, where the GOP has a narrow 221-212 majority.


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US House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) addresses journalists, October 12, 2023, Washington, DC.
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The House has been without a speaker since early this month when Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz – a close ally of Jordan – called a vote to have California Rep. Kevin McCarthy removed from the position. Gaetz accused McCarthy of playing into the hands of Democrats by trying to pass an expansive spending bill and making a “secret side-deal” with US President Joe Biden to keep funding Ukraine. Without a speaker, a spending bill cannot be passed at all, meaning that no more funding for Ukraine – or Israel – can be authorized by legislators. 

Jordan, who is known for repeatedly voting against most Ukraine aid packages, has pledged to object to any further aid should he become speaker. Shortly after McCarthy was ousted, for instance, Jordan said the US should focus on its domestic problems instead of funding a foreign military. 

“The most pressing issue in Americans’ minds is not Ukraine. It is the border situation and crime on the streets,” Jordan said.


October 14, 2023 at 03:44PM

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