House Republicans held a private meeting on Friday morning in response to Majority Leader Steve Scalise’s unexpected withdrawal from the race for Speaker of the House the previous night.
The meeting, scheduled for 10 a.m., had strict rules in place, requiring attendees to leave their cellphones outside, according to an invitation obtained by Fox News Digital.
During this gathering, discussions centered around four proposed amendments to the House Republican Conference Rules, which aimed to change the criteria for selecting a speaker candidate before an official nomination on the House floor.
Among the amendments, three emphasized the need for a speaker-elect to secure the endorsement of a majority of the entire House before a floor vote.
These conditions were expected to lead to extended internal deliberations, especially given the narrow margin for dissent within the House Republican ranks.
One of the amendments, put forth by Representative Chip Roy of Texas, suggested a limit on the number of attempts a candidate could make in a secret ballot vote.
If the required 217 votes weren’t obtained, other contenders might be considered. Another amendment, introduced by Rep. William Timmons of South Carolina, proposed a higher vote threshold and included a Q&A session, though it didn’t specify the number of voting rounds.
Representative Kat Cammack of Florida presented an amendment requiring a speaker designate to secure a significant majority of the conference vote in a private session.
This development followed Scalise’s nomination as the House Republicans’ choice for speaker by a simple majority. While there were speculations about a full-floor vote on the same day, it became evident that Scalise faced significant opposition.
As of early Friday, no official announcements had been made regarding a new candidate. Speculation surrounded House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan of Ohio, who had previously garnered a substantial number of votes.
Other potential candidates included House Majority Whip Tom Emmer of Minnesota and Speaker Pro Tempore Patrick McHenry of North Carolina, but their intentions remained unconfirmed.