By Dave Andrusko
Pro-life Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wi.) won a unanimous vote of support today from House Republicans colleagues for a second term as speaker of the House.
The full House will select the Speaker when the 115th Congress convenes in January. Since Republicans will retain a majority of about two dozen seats in the new Congress, today’s vote virtually assures Ryan’s election as speaker in January.
Ahead of today’s vote, Ryan told reporters, “Welcome to the dawn of a new unified Republican government,” according to the Washington Post.
The Post’s Mike DeBonis reported that President-elect “Trump and Ryan met last week on Capitol Hill and appeared before cameras together for the first time since the campaign began.” Among their shared priorities are repealing and replacing Obamacare, he reported.
“We are on the same page,” Ryan said Tuesday, citing recent conversations with Vice President-elect Mike Pence. “We will be working hand in glove.”
Meanwhile, House Democrats, still reeling from the election results, put off leadership elections until after Thanksgiving “following an outcry from several dozen members who said they needed more time to assess last week’s devastating election,” POLITICO reported.
While no Democrat has formally announced he/she would challenge House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Ca.), “the next two weeks will now be a debate about Pelosi’s future,” Heather Caygle and John Bresnahan reported.
Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) offered the motion to delay the elections, and Rep. Mike Capuano (D-Mass.) seconded. There was heated back and forth over the issue. The motion was about to be ruled out of order by Democratic Caucus Chairman Xavier Becerra (Calif.) before Pelosi acquiesced. She had initially agreed to hold a vote Thursday on whether to delay caucus elections or move forward, saying she thought new members should have a vote.
Pelosi was described as “very angry,” “furious” and “extremely defensive” by multiple sources during what was an often “raucous” gathering.
“It’s a whole new ballgame. Her enemy is time,” said a senior aide to a lawmaker who wanted to delay leadership elections.
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