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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Jordan won’t seek third speaker vote, allowing House to empower interim speaker

Rep. Patrick T. McHenry (R-N.C.), speaker pro tempore of the House, appears on Capitol Hill on Oct. 3.    (Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post)
By Washington Post Staff

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) won’t pursue a third vote for speaker as the House looks to empower the legislative powers of Speaker Pro Tempore Patrick T. McHenry (R-N.C.), according to people familiar with the situation who spoke on the condition of anonymity to detail private discussions.

After two failed votes, Republicans had made clear the conservative firebrand didn’t have enough support to win the speaker’s gavel. With House functions at a standstill, lawmakers will now move forward with a proposal to expand the powers of the acting speaker.

Jordan is dropping his bid for the time being, but remains the speaker designee and will reserve the option to hold a speaker vote at any time.

Senior Democrats are supportive of the plan. It reopens the government as a new government funding deadline approaches in less than a month. And as Jordan as the speaker designee, they are still able to frame Republicans as extremists backing an election denier as their leader.

McHenry has served in the role since Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) was ousted on Oct. 3.