Who is Minnesota Rep. Tom Emmer, the GOP's new House speaker candidate?

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House Republicans have identified their new candidate for the speakership of that body, nominating Minnesota Rep. Tom Emmer in a vote Tuesday.

Emmer, who has served in Congress since 2014, was one of nine candidates in the running after the ouster of Rep. Kevin McCarthy earlier this year. Both Rep. Steve Scalise and Rep. Jim Jordan mounted unsuccessful bids for the position, leaving the House without a speaker for three weeks.

Emmer consolidated support in recent days, including from McCarthy himself, and now could face a vote from the full House.

Here’s a quick biography of Emmer.

Prior to Congressional Service

Emmer received his bachelor's degree from the University of Alaska-Fairbanks, and studied law at William Mitchell College of Law, according to his official Congressional biography. He obtained his law license and opened his own firm in Minnesota.

He served on multiple city councils before running for the Minnesota House of Representatives in 2004. He served in that body until 2010, when he mounted an unsuccessful gubernatorial campaign in Minnesota.

Elected to Congress

After Rep. Michele Bachmann announced she would not seek reelection in 2014, Emmer entered the race in Minnesota’s sixth district and ultimately won a seat in Congress, which he has successfully defended in the last four elections.

In his last reelection bid, he defeated Democratic challenger Jeanne Hendricks by nearly 78,000 votes.

Roles in Congress

Emmer served as the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee from 2019 to 2023, spearheading GOP efforts to retake control of the lower chamber.

Republicans achieved that goal in 2022, and as a result Emmer was able to successfully win the role of House Majority Whip, the third-ranking position in the caucus.

He also serves on the Committee on Financial Services in the House.

Key Votes/Positions

According to The Hill, Emmer is one of two GOP speaker candidates to have voted to certify the results of the 2020 presidential election. Scalise and Jordan both voted in favor of challenges to voting results in Arizona and Pennsylvania.

CNN has reported that Emmer has been critical of elements of the 2020 election, pushing for stronger voter ID laws and criticizing the use of mail-in balloting in Georgia in the months after the election.

Emmer also voted against establishing a commission to investigate the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

More recently, Emmer was a supporter of the Republican-led “Secure the Border Act of 2023,” which would have restarted construction on a border wall between the United States and Mexico and stepped up funding for additional Border Patrol agents, among other practices.

On his campaign website, Emmer puts forth a platform that includes border security as a top priority, along with reducing the deficit. He specifically mentions using the “regular order” of appropriations for funding the government, which could play a role in upcoming negotiations over continuing resolutions in the house.

Speakership Bid

Emmer was one of nine Republicans who sought nomination for the Speaker of the House position after Jordan failed to obtain enough votes to secure the role.

Emmer received the endorsement of McCarthy ahead of winning the vote Tuesday, but he has not been endorsed by former President Donald Trump. According to the Associated Press, Emmer has run afoul of Trump and other Republicans because of his vote on certifying the 2020 election, as well as his support of the “Respect for Marriage Act,” which codified same-sex marriage laws at the federal level.

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