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Trump Supporter Mike Johnson Elected as House Speaker

The election of Mike Johnson as House Speaker and its implications for American democracy amid a chaotic nomination process.

Mike Johnnson speaks at a town hall-style meeting with constituents at Bossier Parish Community College. Source: Shutterstock/Allen J.M. Smith

Mike Johnson, a representative from Louisiana emerged as their pick for House Speaker after weeks of chaotic nominations.

House Republicans have chosen the Speaker of the US House of Representatives after a confusing and unsuccessful process. 

This agreement could be seen as a result of exhaustion after three weeks of embarrassing mistakes. 

Controversial Policy Stances

Johnson denies that humans are causing climate change. However, this contradicts the harsh reality that his home state of Louisiana is experiencing. Climate change has ravaged the state, causing rising sea levels and frequent hurricanes.

Johnson’s controversial stances don’t stop at climate change denial. He is famous for being against abortion, voting against aid to Ukraine, and strongly opposing LGBTQ+ rights. These positions have sparked concerns about his ability to represent a diverse and changing America.

A Leading Role in Election Overturning

Johnson’s involvement in trying to overturn the 2020 election results is the most concerning part of his political past. He helped try to change election results in some states and spread false claims about election cheating. These actions have raised questions about his commitment to the democratic process.

This highlights that the second-in-line for the presidency violated their oath and tried to disenfranchise four states, as described by writer Marcy Wheeler.

Trumpian Loyalty and the House GOP’s Chaotic Month

Johnson’s support for Donald Trump and his role in the Republican Party have made him a strong supporter. 

In 2020, he tried to change election results in some states and repeated Trump’s false claims about election fraud.

Regardless of his shortcomings, Johnson has a knack for pleasing Trump. Donald Trump is the leader of the Republican party and appreciates unwavering support.

Chaos in House Speaker Nominations

This followed a tumultuous month for House Republicans, marked by the failure of better-known nominees. Before Johnson, the House GOP had three other popular nominees: Scalise from Louisiana, Jordan representing Ohio, and Emmer of Minnesota.

Jim Jordan tried and failed three times to become Speaker, displaying arrogance and an inability to count votes. This may have been a relief to some, given his controversial past as the wrestling coach at Ohio State.

Steve Scalise, Jim Jordan, and Tom Emmer’s unsuccessful attempts followed the removal of Kevin McCarthy from California. 

McCarthy’s removal resulted from his accountable position on averting a government closure through a provisional funding solution. This move didn’t sit well with his party’s far-right faction, causing divisions.

The Speaker nomination process was chaotic, revealing deep divisions within the Republican Party and its uncertain future.

Democratic Unity and Missed Opportunity with Hakeem Jeffries

In the past month, Republicans and their media supporters often described the Democratic party as disorganized. But, in reality, Democrats remained united, consistently supporting Hakeem Jeffries from New York.

While Johnson eventually secured the position of House Speaker, there were missed opportunities for the GOP. Hakeem Jeffries from New York, known for his dedication to democracy and peaceful power transfer, was a possible option. 

Although not a realistic contender in the Republican-controlled House, Jeffries represented a different path for the party.

The Ominous Future with Johnson at the Helm

As Johnson assumes the role of House Speaker, many wonder what the future holds for American democracy. Concerns persist about his commitment to constitutional principles.

There is uncertainty about his intentions regarding the election. It is still being determined if he will attempt to overturn the results. This uncertainty arises as President Biden’s potential victory approaches.

President Biden’s Response and the Fragility of Democracy

A reporter asked Biden if he was concerned that Johnson might overturn the election if he wins again next year.

Biden expressed that he isn’t concerned as Johnson cannot do that. He said he was okay with the previous government’s attempts to alter the election outcome. This was because they had lost approximately 60 court cases.

However, there are growing concerns about the state of American democracy. People worry that the safeguards that protected the 2020 election might also not work if Trump is re-elected.

Johnson refused to discuss his previous efforts to reverse election results. His fellow Republicans jeered and silenced a reporter who asked about it.

While the chaos in the House in October is over, having Mike Johnson as Speaker doesn’t give much to celebrate. Despite Biden’s confidence, we still have much to be concerned about.

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