Donald Trump is considering making a trip to the Capitol amid calls from loyalists within the lower chamber for him to assume the position of House Speaker. Such a visit would be the first time the former president has visited the building since a mob of his supporters breached it in a violent riot on Jan. 6, 2021.
Multiple outlets reported on Thursday that the former president is mulling a trip next week ahead of a vote, with Politico noting that he is open to pitching himself as a candidate, citing a Republican familiar with internal discussions. A source familiar with Trump’s recent private discussions tells Rolling Stone that Trump has indeed uttered that he’s open to the possibility of a speakership run. (Trump, of course, often says he’s “considering” or “would consider” a lot of things that never come to fruition.)
On Tuesday, an insurgency of hardline House Republicans led by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) succeeded in ousting Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) from the speakership. As the now-rudderless GOP fights among itself and scrambles to nominate a replacement, Trump loyalists have floated nominating the former president for the role. Critically, there is no requirement that the House Speaker be an elected member of Congress.
Even within the narrow Republican majority in the House, Trump’s nomination would be divisive. Democrats obviously consider the proposal a nonstarter, and moderate GOP members, as well as those in vulnerable districts, could view even the suggestion of Trump’s return to Congress as a blow to the GOP’s anticipated outcomes in 2024. And while Trump has not officially declared his intent to run for the position, he also hasn’t completely ruled it out.
On Wednesday, Trump shared a digitally created image on Truth Social of himself standing at the speaker’s podium and brandishing the gavel.
On Thursday, the former president wrote on Truth Social that while he is running for president, he will do “whatever is necessary to help with the Speaker of the House selection process, short term, until the final selection of a GREAT REPUBLICAN SPEAKER is made.
“A Speaker who will help a new, but highly experienced President, ME, MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” Trump added.