Following the removal of Kevin McCarthy as House Speaker in a narrow vote, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, a Republican from Louisiana, is actively seeking support to fill the prominent role, sources have informed Fox News Digital.
In preparation for a potential vote on Wednesday to select the next speaker, Scalise has been discreetly making calls and garnering backing from fellow lawmakers. This behind-the-scenes effort signals Scalise’s ambition to assume the position of House Speaker.
Rep. Matt Gaetz, a prominent Republican from Florida who introduced the motion to vacate against McCarthy, which ultimately led to his removal, spoke highly of Scalise’s potential candidacy. Gaetz described Scalise as “a phenomenal speaker,” underlining the growing support for Scalise among his colleagues.
While McCarthy’s removal led to the temporary appointment of Rep. Patrick McHenry from North Carolina as the new speaker pro tempore of the House, Scalise’s bid for the speaker’s role is gaining momentum.
Fox News Digital confirmed later in the evening that McCarthy had decided not to run again for the position of speaker, further opening the field for potential candidates.
Rep. Greg Murphy, a Republican from North Carolina, revealed plans for a candidate forum on Tuesday and a subsequent vote on Wednesday to determine McCarthy’s successor.
The removal of McCarthy from the speakership stemmed from a vote in which eight Republicans, including Gaetz, aligned with all Democrats in opposition to McCarthy’s continued leadership.
Scalise, when questioned about his potential bid for House Speaker, remained cautious, stating, “I don’t have anything to announce,” following a Republican leadership meeting.
Concerns were also raised about Scalise’s ability to physically handle the demands of the speaker’s role, given his recent diagnosis of blood cancer earlier this year. In response, Scalise assured reporters of his fitness, stating, “I feel great.”