How the 9 House Republicans running for speaker are making their pitch Monday night

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Republicans are meeting Monday evening to hear from the nine GOP lawmakers pitching themselves for the top job in the House of Representatives.

The candidate who gets a majority of the conference vote in a secret ballot Tuesday morning will become House Republicans’ next speaker designate, but still has to win at least 217 votes to clinch the gavel.

Fox News Digital took a look at how the higher-profile names in the race are pitching themselves.

Tom Emmer

The No. 3 House Republican, Majority Whip Tom Emmer, R-Minn., is the highest-ranking GOP lawmaker running for speaker. Emmer touted those credentials in a Saturday letter to colleagues, emphasizing Republicans’ legislative wins and reminding them that he helped the GOP win its razor-thin majority as chair of House Republicans’ campaign arm.

‘At the NRCC (National Republican Congressional Committee), we fought side by side and worked for every inch of this majority in districts across the country,’ he wrote. ‘As your Majority Whip, we showed just how effective we can be when members from across the Conference come together and apply that same culture of teamwork, communications, and respect.’

Byron Donalds

Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., rolled out a broad but straightforward mandate for his would-be speakership. In a statement Friday, he said, ‘My sole focus will be securing our border, funding our government responsibly, advancing a conservative vision for the House of Representatives and the American people, and expanding our Republican majority.’

Donalds also pointed out that he would be the first African-American speaker if elected.

The Freedom Caucus Republican has quickly made a name for himself as a popular face in the media, and has already scored support from three Florida Republicans. Having only come to Congress in 2021, he is the shortest-serving candidate running.

Kevin Hern

Republican Study Committee Chair Kevin Hern handed out a memo to GOP lawmakers on Monday emphasizing the work he’s done to prepare for his bid for speaker, including contacting every member of the conference over the weekend ‘to hear about their priorities.’

The millionaire former McDonalds franchise owner, who now runs the largest conservative House caucus, also pointed out his private sector success. 

‘My 35 years of experience as a business leader makes me uniquely qualified to lead a diverse Republican Conference,’ Hern, R-Okla., wrote. ‘As Chairman of the Republican Study Committee, I have prioritized educating our members on key legislative items, listening to member priorities, and developing policy solutions well in advance of Congressional deadlines.’

His staff was giving out McDonalds’ hamburgers alongside his memo on Monday.

Mike Johnson and Gary Palmer

Vice GOP Conference Chair Mike Johnson, R-La., and Republican Policy Committee Chairman Gary Palmer, R-Ala., are, like Emmer, members of leadership who are throwing their hats in the ring for speaker.

Johnson’s pitch highlights his 20 years as a constitutional law attorney and his unanimous re-election to his leadership role last fall.

In his letter to colleagues, he alluded to himself as ‘a team player and a bridge-builder with endless energy and a unique mix of skills and experiences.’

Palmer pledged to ‘do what I can to put our differences behind us and unite Republicans behind a clear path forward.’


Four House Republicans who have mostly kept out of the spotlight in this Congress are also jumping into the race — Reps. Jack Bergman, R-Mich.; Austin Scott, R-Ga.; Pete Sessions, R-Texas; and Dan Meuser, R-Pa.

Bergman has emphasized his service as a Marine Corps general and is already heading into the race with endorsements from four Michigan House Republicans.

Sessions handed out flyers to members Monday morning pointing to his past leadership experience, including running the Rules Committee and the NRCC, and pointing out that the Republican Conference saw a 63-seat gain under his watch.

Meuser pitched giving rank-and-file members a seat at the navigating table in his letter to colleagues, calling for a steering committee consisting of 10% of the GOP Conference ‘to discuss legislation and set priorities.’

Scott comes into the race having previously challenged Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, in the last closed-door speaker election, scoring a surprising 81 votes despite jumping into the race at the last minute.

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