Trump says he would temporarily be Speaker ‘if necessary’
Former President Trump said that he would step in as Speaker of the House “if necessary” as the GOP scrambles to find a new leader.
“I have been asked to speak as a unifier because I have so many friends in Congress,” Trump told Fox News Digital. “If they don’t get the vote, they have asked me if I would consider taking the Speakership until they get somebody longer-term, because I am running for president.”
“They have asked me if I would take it for a short period of time for the party, until they come to a conclusion — I’m not doing it because I want to — I will do it if necessary, should they not be able to make their decision,” the former president told the outlet.
Trump declined to name who he talked to, Fox News Digital reported Thursday. He also said that he would take the role for a “30, 60, or 90-day period” if the party could not come to a consensus.
House Republicans have been in turmoil since former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) was ousted from the top spot Tuesday afternoon. McCarthy has said that he will not seek the Speakership again, while two lawmakers — Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) — announced they will pursue the job.
Several Republicans have also floated Trump as a potential contender for Speaker, including Reps. Troy Nehls (R-Texas) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.). Greene said earlier this week that she will only be supporting the former president in the Speaker’s race.
Trump previously had dismissed the idea of him running for Speaker, saying that his focus his securing a second term in the White House. However, he had previously suggested he would do “whatever it is to help,” as Republicans look to rally around a new leader.
He also declined Wednesday to endorse any particular candidate for the job.
“My focus is totally on that. If I can help them during the process, I’ll do it. But we have some great people in the Republican Party that could do a great job as Speaker,” Trump told reporters Wednesday.
Trump is also considering making a trip to Capitol Hill next Tuesday, when the House GOP conference will hold a forum for Speaker candidates.
The Speaker technically is not required to serve in the House. However, some critics have pointed out that under current GOP House conference rules, Trump may not be eligible to serve as Speaker since he has been indicted on numerous felony charges. House Republicans could also vote to change this rule.