Politics

Democrat Unveils Bill To Allow Only House Members To Serve As Speaker

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A new bill introduced on Monday by Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-Pa.) would allow only an elected House member to serve as Speaker after former President Trump called the suggestion that he seek the gavel “so interesting.”

The Constitution does not directly state that the House Speaker must be a member of the chamber, but to date, the role has never been filled by an outsider.

Boyle argued that the statute should be made clear, even if electing someone outside of Congress to serve as Speaker remains a long shot. His bill, titled the Mandating That Being an Elected Member Be an Essential Requirement for Speakership Act, would explicitly limit eligibility to current House lawmakers.

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“The Speaker of the U.S. House is second in the United States presidential line of succession. That Donald Trump’s name would even be tossed around as a potential speaker in the people’s house, should serve as an alarm bell that our current requirements need to be amended in the name of protecting our nation and our democracy,” Boyle said in a statement.

While all Speakers in U.S. history have been incumbent members of the House, any lawmaker can nominate whomever they wish during the roll call at the start of each session of Congress to elect the chamber’s top-ranking leader.

In recent years, some lawmakers who didn’t want to vote for their party’s leader have opted to nominate outsiders.

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