Several Republicans prevented Jim Jordan from becoming Speaker, but the numbers 5 and 33 trillion will not go away

As of around 11:30 a.m. eastern time, 4 Republicans out of 9 were still trying for Speaker: (L-R) Johnson, Emmer, Hern and Donalds (Photos via CNN)

By Robert Willmann

Like Mother Nature, mathematics is impartial. Acting like petulant children, several Republican members of the House of Representatives prevented Jim Jordan from becoming Speaker by using the whole number five, or higher, to prevent him from getting a majority 217 votes and being elected. For the third time, a public vote took place in the House on Friday, 20 October 2023, and at that time, Jordan received 194 votes; all 210 Democrats present voted for their candidate Hakeem Jeffries; 20 obviously anti-Jordan Republicans voted against him by voting for someone else; and 5 other Republicans voted similarly.

But now those petulant Republicans are running up against numbers themselves. A candidate more pleasing to their agenda can also be blocked by five or more votes. And a much bigger number is not going away — the U.S. National Debt is $33,627,279,194,343.04 as of last Friday, 20 October [1].

Speaking with a forked tongue and holding a knife in his hand, former Speaker Kevin McCarthy stood up last Friday for the third vote on Jordan and nominated him to be Speaker! As the intelligence community likes to say, “we assess with high confidence” that McCarthy was one of the main movers trying to block Jordan from becoming Speaker, which can easily be seen by which Republicans other than Jordan received votes, and by whom. In looking at the earlier votes on Jordan, in the first one on Tuesday, 17 October, Steve Scalise (who tried to become Speaker after McCarthy was ousted) received 7 votes, McCarthy 6, and Lee Zeldin 3. These votes revealed the effort to block Jordan. In the second vote on Wednesday, 18 October, Scalise received 7 votes, McCarthy 5, and Zeldin 3. In the third vote on Friday, 20 October, Scalise received 8, Speaker pro tempore McHenry (who was appointed to that job by McCarthy) received 6, Zeldin received 4, and McCarthy 2. That little group made sure that five or more votes were made to someone other than Jordan, and to “send a message” to others. Furthermore, Lee Zeldin is no longer in Congress. He ran for governor of New York last year but lost to Kathy Hochul. Three House members from New York state voted for Zeldin in the first two rounds on Jordan — D’Esposito, Garbarino, and LaLota. They were joined by another New York member, Marcus Molinaro, and again voted for Zeldin in the third round. What a coincidence! Did each one of them independently and on their own decide to vote that way, even if Zeldin created an impression that he supported Jordan? We will see if they vote for Zeldin instead of Tom Emmer in any open vote for Speaker.

Shortly after that third vote on 20 October, and Jordan was not going to continue to try to be Speaker, McCarthy promptly endorsed Tom Emmer for the position, who also has been the majority whip in the House. I would not trust Emmer for a minute, in these trying times, based on his background.

The Republicans in the House decided to have the members who then wanted to try to be Speaker to announce their intention by Sunday, two days ago. Nine did so. Before the House adjourned last Friday, its next session was to begin today, 24 October, at 11:00 a.m. eastern time. But after convening today, they immediately recessed at 11:02 a.m., subject to the call of the Chair. This happened because the Republicans did not have anyone lined up to have a vote to be Speaker. Of the nine who had announced, four were left as of around 11:30 a.m. eastern time today.

Around 11:45 a.m., the House Republicans, after meeting privately and taking internal votes on those wanting to be Speaker, announced that Emmer emerged as the one who would be put forward in an open vote on the House floor. Rumors are floating around that anywhere between 10 and 26 (or more) Republicans did not vote for Emmer in the private meeting. Math tells us that those numbers are larger than 5.

This brings us to the subtraction of integers. The House Democrats have been voting as a bloc. If enough of them vote “present”, or do not show up for an open vote for Speaker, it will reduce the number of votes to less than the 217 Emmer would need to get a majority of the votes cast. That would spice things up a lot.

The other number important to Congress is money. The national debt became an issue when the federal government’s 2023 fiscal year ended on 30 September 2023 and a budget or more money had to be “appropriated”, as opposed to just “authorized”. An impasse developed and to wriggle out of it, Congress passed House Resolution 5860 (Public Law 118-15), using the proverbial “continuing appropriations” technique. Section 106 of that law said that funds appropriated would be available only until 17 November 2023, unless other laws for appropriations were made before that date [2]. The debt question and related money matters were some of the issues that pushed McCarthy out.

Back on 3 June 2023, with federal spending banging up against the statutory debt ceiling, Congress passed the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023, Public Law 118-5. That slick little trick raised the federal debt limit without establishing a new debt limit! And it lets the debt increase with no ceiling or limit until 1 January 2025, after the 2024 general elections for president and numerous other offices!

Tom Emmer voted for both of those bills.

The 17th of November is fast approaching.



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21 Responses to Several Republicans prevented Jim Jordan from becoming Speaker, but the numbers 5 and 33 trillion will not go away

  1. David C Kissinger says:

    Jim Jordan is far too radical and corrupt to lead the House. He still vehemently makes the false and ridiculous claim that the election was “stolen.”

    American hero Adam Kinzinger had stated during the bipartisan January 6th Truth Commission, that McCarthy, as speaker, would be beholden to the “crazies” in the party. This has proven to be true.

    The republican party has proven itself to be morally bankrupt, and America is suffering because of it.

    I find it very telling that of the nine current candidates, and McCarthy, Jordan and Scalise, are all white men except for one black man. Not a single woman! Are the republicans saying that there are no qualified women to lead the House? Small wonder why the majority of women vote Democratic. The republicans are just too radical and bellicose for the majority of women to support.

    Democrats have won the popular vote in seven of the last eight presidential elections. This trend will continue if republicans nominate unfit, unqualified, Crooked Donald.

    • blue peacock says:

      The popular vote doesn’t elect POTUS. If it did then may as well let California choose.

    • Fred says:


      Democrats have hated that Electoral College called for in the Contitution since 1861. Why are they worried about the 2024 election? 81,000,000 ballots. Biden can’t lose with a mechanism like was used the last time around.

  2. al says:

    Trump Party knocks Rep Emmer out of Speaker’s race. In the secondary roll call vote 26 Republicans voted present or for another person, according to House GOP Conference Secretary Lisa McClain (R-Mich.). Emmer could only afford to lose four Republicans and still win the Speakership on the House floor.

    It came after former President Trump released a scathing statement calling Emmer a “RINO” and saying voting for him “would be a tragic mistake.”

  3. babelthuap says:

    Whoever gets it they will print more money and you will like it. If you don’t like it they will stop vote counting at midnight and show you what you like a week or so later. I no longer vote for this reason. My vote got put into a black box last election due to a malfunction. I asked where it would be counted. I was told in a massive blue city. A lot of this going on. Nothing can be done about it. Actually something can but it will get messy as hell.

    • Eric Newhill says:

      America is finished, brother. Welcome to the brave new world. Just shut up and trust the government and its experts – or else.

      They say the pen is mightier than the sword, but that is just more effette BS. The pen tells you what to believe and the sword removes all doubt and makes you confess to believe it – or silences you if you don’t.

      Cowards rationalize their belief.

    • F&L says:

      “If you don’t like it they will stop vote counting at midnight and show you what you like a week or so later.”

      Or –
      Release a virus and a vaccine.
      Or –
      Start a new war or expand the ongoing wars. With, not coincidentally, not only a non functioning congress but a congress that simply can’t function even if it wanted to. You have to keep in mind that cretin level idiots and count dracula level Svengalis like Matt Gaetz and the blonde warrior woman Taylor-Greene aren’t necessarily committed “conservatives” or fiscally prudent reformers or anything of the kind. They can also be paid actors from Monkey Wrench University.

  4. F&L says:

    Groundhog day on endless repeat.

    But maybe not, they nominated a guy named Johnson. Would you like to see America’s Johnson again, dear ladies, honored fags, illustrious bisexuals and distinguished trannies, wouldn’t that be nice? Wasn’t LBJ sufficient?

    I don’t believe any of it. It’s a CIA manipulation in service of keeping our government from exercising it’s checks & balances versus the gigantic war they are brewing in the Middle East. The object is to set west Asia on fire so as to pull the legs out from under Brics 11 and Belt & Road. It also moves huge assets, particularly tomahawk cruise missiles into range of most of the Russian Federation and Iran, obviously.

    Little Big – Public Enemy

    Everything You Know About the Future is Wrong – John Gray

    • Peter Williams says:

      The ships carrying those cruise missiles are also in range of Russian and Iranian retaliatory missiles. Be a shame to see those ships sunk.

  5. ked says:

    time to get over the Denial Stage. the Trump Party is conducting a soft insurrection since the hard one failed.

    • F&L says:

      Needed saying. Succinct and to the point.
      Soft like his turning Jeb Bush inside out during the 2016 primary debates. But now he turns the entire congress on its head. I think there’s a bit more to it but Trump gets that it’s not 1970 anymore unlike Biden. Problem is he wants it to be 25,000 BC. Probably an improvement come to think of it.

    • different clue says:

      Well . . . if just enough old-fashioned Republican Reps in the House disapprove deeply enough of letting a Trump Party soft insurrection succeed, they could, if they wish, join the Democratic Reps in the House in voting for Jeffries as Speaker.

      They “could” do that. If they wanted to. If they also feel that this is a soft Trump insurrection in slo-mo rollout. And if they feel it would be a bad thing.

      • ked says:

        “old fashioned republicans”? read about them in history books (those pre-blog things made of paper).
        & if they did so, “they’d never work in this town again”. which is evidently the whole raison d’etre for a professional politician’s existence. then there’s the stochastisy break-out threat that ain’t so soft. & lastly, the private $$$ spigot that rules over all would never turn on for them again… might have to get a real job.

  6. F&L says:

    An Israeli ambassador to the UK actually cites Dresden to justify ongoing genocide in Gaza. And Jeffrey Epstein’s pal Ehud Barak will make you think you’re on Chiller theatre. Calls for wiping out the entire people.

    If you don’t see that this is a message to Iran and who knows who else about their intention to use nukes then it’s time for an autumn refresher seminar in diplomacy.

    Boy oh boy, I could really see a certain devil or two fixing to let them have their way just so the adults could finally say “oops, I guess it was an automatic launch or something or faulty radar, but sorry, Israel no longer exists. Yes we are very sorry. Gosh darn 1962 deterrence tech, Wally.” “Yes Beaver, what a shame – but think of the books and movies!”

    Using US WW2 War crimes to justify current war crimes.

    • TonyL says:

      “And Jeffrey Epstein’s pal Ehud Barak”

      My guess it’s “boss” not “pal”. The Israelis have been blackmailing US politicians since forever. Jeffrey Epstein “commited suicide” when he became a liability.

      • F&L says:

        Well put. Epstein was a recent link in the long chain of Jewish underworld entities going back to before murder incorporated – which was Jewish, not Sicilian in origin despite Albert Anastasia’s appearance in books, movies and documentaries. Hollywood, owned by Jews from Belarus and other areas of the pale of settlement, has made a point of obscuring the dominance of their tribe in criminal enterprise. It’s all very amusing, their banking and financial prominence when you understand that a loan shark was not a nice friendly gentleman who fussed over raising and delivering cute puppies for the orphanages of children filled up with the offspring of victims of his trade.

        Did you see that page 1 of the NYTIMES internet edition this morning is NOT Gaza, and NOT Mike Johnson as Speaker but IS something about a gunman in the state of Maine and another mass shooting incident? How much do you want to bet that someone made a phone call?

  7. F&L says:

    Yikes. I just saw new speaker Mike Johnson speak for the first time. He’s not my personal cup of tea at all but he sure can speak. Future President? Absolutely.

    Now I check the track record of previous President Johnsons. Not good.

    It’s a subliminal play for the women’s and gay vote which is huge.

    “We love Johnson! Give us more Johnson, please!”

    For those who missed that the brand Johnson & Johnson was a big hit with the ladies.

    • ked says:

      though the media focuses on his constitutional law gig (Architect of the Jan 6 Insurrection), for America he’s a trained christianist family therapist. & speaks gently like one. & America is now his patient. enjoy President Faith Leader.

      • F&L says:

        Even with F&L’s initials I’m not so sure that I will enjoy President Faith Leader. What we have now is worse than Godzilla though so I’ll stay tuned.

        • ked says:

          at least Godzilla was entertaining.
          but not to worry, F&L … it will be a very long time before they come for you. your salvation is far too much work for their kind. but they WILL get around to you, eventually. they MUST save us all, or we die in their trying.
          what hasn’t yet been processed in re: the Establishment Clause is his certainty that Freedom of Religion means Religion’s superior standing over Government. oh yeah, it’s going to be a laugh riot.

  8. optimax says:

    Wrong sheep.

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