Last Updated on October 16, 2023
GOP Congressman John Rutherford is clinging onto hope that Kevin McCarthy can be reinstated as Speaker of the House and tells reporters that he won’t support Rep. Jim Jordan for speaker out of spite toward Rep. Matt Gaetz, who filed the historic motion to vacate that removed Kevin McCarthy.
On Friday, Rep. John Rutherford (R-FL) told the media that he won’t support Rep. Jim Jordan for Speaker of the House because he doesn’t want Rep. Matt Gaetz to “win”. Rep. Gaetz is backing Jordan after filing the historic motion to vacate that made Kevin McCarthy the first speaker in American history to be thrown out of the chair.
Jordan appears to stand alone as the front-runner for speaker after GOP Majority Leader Steve Scalise was forced to end his speakership campaign when it was realized that he could not secure the 217 votes needed to win. Currently, conservative Republicans are coalescing around Jim Jordan, who has widespread support among the GOP’s voter base, but establishment hardliners, including John Rutherford, are blocking the process from moving forward by withholding their votes, in a last-ditch effort to make Kevin McCarthy speaker once more.
On Friday, after closed-door GOP conference meetings to take votes on speakership nominees, Rutherford was telling reporters that he was still supporting Kevin McCarthy and that he won’t support Jim Jordan for speaker out of spite toward Matt Gaetz and the seven other Republicans who voted in favor of the motion to vacate.
“I’m back with Kevin McCarthy,” Rutherford told reporters, going on to describe the deposed speaker as “head and shoulders above the rest.”
“And you’re a ‘no’ on Jordan on the floor right now?” a reporter asked him.
“I’m a ‘no’ on allowing Matt Gaetz and the other seven to win by putting their individual in as speaker,” he replied.
Hear Rutherford’s comments in the video clip below:
Rep. John Rutherford (R- FL) said he still supported Rep. McCarthy (R-CA) for the speakership, saying he had 96% of the conference's support: "I'm a no on allowing Matt Gaetz and the other seven to win by putting their individual in as speaker." pic.twitter.com/lDySGPzvoZ
— CSPAN (@cspan) October 13, 2023