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Louisiana Rep. Mike Johnson elected 56th speaker of House

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After nearly a month of discord and several failed nominations, Louisiana Rep. Mike Johnson was elected as the 56th Speaker of the House by Republicans, succeeding Kevin McCarthy. Johnson, a notable ally of former President Donald Trump, achieved a feat his predecessors couldn’t: unifying a divided House Republican conference. He secured support from a wide spectrum of GOP members, including those who previously backed alternative candidates. Johnson’s election marks the first time since John Boehner in 2011 that a Republican has garnered the full support of the party for the Speaker position.

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Johnson has been an influential figure since his first election to Congress in 2016, holding positions such as the vice chair of the House Republican Conference and membership in the House Judiciary and Armed Service committees. Despite being a close associate of Trump, Johnson faced criticism and scrutiny for his stance against certifying Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory. Additionally, he was a member of Trump’s defense team during the 2020 impeachment trial. The Louisiana congressman has a conservative voting record, highlighted by an 84% rating from Heritage Action for America in the current session and an A+ rating from anti-abortion group Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America.

While Johnson’s election signaled a unifying moment for House Republicans, Democrats remained skeptical, citing his extreme voting record and efforts to challenge the 2020 election results. House Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries criticized Johnson for his intentions to undermine vital programs like Social Security and Medicare and his persistent stance against abortion. As the House looks to move forward, Johnson emphasized his commitment to restoring trust and driving the GOP’s legislative priorities.

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