Trump has tried in the past to get himself elected to be the Speaker of the House and blew up when House Republicans would not vote for him.
ABC’s Jon Karl reported:
McCarthy was trying to get the votes to become Speaker of the House back in January. As you remember, it went through days of voting, 15 rounds of balloting, and publicly Donald Trump had endorsed Kevin McCarthy for Speaker, uh, but what I’ve learned is that when Trump saw Matt Gaetz step up on the 7th ballot back in January and vote for Donald Trump for speaker.
And then he saw all the cable networks, uh, you know relay the vote count and it was only a single vote for Trump, you know, 212 votes for Hakeem Jeffries, 200 for Kevin McCarthy. Some others had a handful of votes. And then only one for Donald Trump. Trump became angry and he actually reached out, contacted Gaetz made his views known within a, within a small circle of, of Republicans that the only reason he only got one vote is that nobody bothered to nominate him and so people didn’t know they could vote for him.
At that point he made it clear that he wanted, uh, Matt Gaetz to nominate him for Speaker of the House.
So after, after, and this is my exclusive reporting in the book that, that Trump himself had reached out to Gaetz.
It was this, this whole speech, uh, there was. Over, during the course of it, you heard kind of heckling from the Democratic side of the aisle. And when that speech was over, they called for the roll, and they once again did another round of, of voting. And once again, Donald Trump got a single vote for Speaker of the House, and that vote… was from Matt Gaetz, who had just nominated him.. so, uh, not very realistic in terms of the votes. Even a very pro-Trump group of people, like the Republicans in the House of Representatives, had absolutely no interest, uh, in him being Speaker of the House. Trump, as I report in the book, became… Even more livid after that happened and pushed Republicans to drop the, the ones that were holding out on McCarthy to drop their objections and to allow McCarthy to be elected Speaker of the House.
So this, this, this would be ended and Trump would no longer be embarrassed. And that’s what happened on the very next ballot as you well remember, cause we all watched it on television that night, actually January 6th of this year, uh, Donald Trump was no longer, uh, in nomination, and Kevin McCarthy was elected Speaker of the House.
Former Pres. Trump secretly plotted to be elected Speaker of the House in January, while he publicly supported Kevin McCarthy’s bid, according to sources.
— ABC News Live (@ABCNewsLive) October 6, 2023
The only reason why Kevin McCarthy became Speaker was because Trump was embarrassed that no one was voting for him in the election. However, Trump was the person who demanded that Matt Gaetz place his name in nomination.
Trump wanted to be the Speaker of the House, but House Republicans didn’t want him. Trump got zero besides Gaetz.
It was a rare good decision by House Republicans to pass on having Trump as their speaker.
The former president would not show up in Washington. He wouldn’t do the job, and he has no clue how to do the job.
Forget about the House rules. Republicans could change those. The bigger issue is that even House Republicans would not vote for Donald Trump.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association