Democrats Float Deal To End House Speaker Fight



Some moderate Democrats in the House have proposed a compromise to the Republicans in an effort to halt the bitter struggle for the speakership.

Since Republicans seized power last week and ousted Speaker Kevin McCarthy, the House has been without a leader.

There have been multiple Republican contenders for speaker, but they have been unable to unite their party behind a single candidate.

On Friday, four Democrats wrote to House Speaker Pro Tempore Patrick McHenry (R-NC) saying they were willing to give him limited powers to resume fundamental government activities. The letter was obtained by The Post.

The four moderates were Reps. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.), Ed Case (D-Hawaii), Susie Lee (D-Nev.) and Jared Golden (D-Maine). All are members of the House’s bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus.

“In light of our nation’s pressing issues, a looming government shutdown, and the attacks on our key ally, Israel, we strongly support an immediate vote to expand the Speaker Pro Tempore’s authorities to all for the consideration of a legislative agenda limited to the most pressing issues,” the letter read.

Foreign aid and emergency supplemental financing for Ukraine and Israel were among the Democratic priorities, as was an extension of the current continuing resolution funding the government through January 11 and consideration of the remaining House appropriations bills for Fiscal Year 2024.

The four legislators also stated that the emergency powers would only be in effect for 15-day periods until a permanent Speaker was selected.

“The government cannot continue to be hamstrung — leaving American families, our economy,
and national security at risk. We hope you’d agree that we must restart the business of the House
of Representatives without delay,” the letter added.

The Republican caucus in the House has not been able to agree on a single nominee.

House Majority Leader Rep. Steve Scalise won an internal vote this week, but he fell short of the votes needed to secure the gavel on the House floor, where he can afford to lose only four of his colleagues. On Thursday, he officially dropped out of the contest for Speaker.

On Friday, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the fiery chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, was elected by his fellow representatives.

While Jordan enjoys widespread support among conservatives, he has met with less success than Scalise in winning over moderates.

One House GOP insider dismissed working with Democrats as “West Wing Fan Fiction,” but warned that Jordan had at least 20 “hard nos” among his colleagues.

“If he fails to consolidate support early next week, who the hell knows what’s next.”