From every indication, there is no end in sight to the drama that has currently engulfed the vacant speaker of the House role.
And it appears former President Donald Trump isn’t particularly keen with the current trajectory that this saga is heading on.
Trump is reportedly not a fan of House Majority Whip Tom Emmer and won’t give him his blessing as a candidate for speaker, per Politico.
While Trump has not come out publicly against Emmer in one of his blistering, trademark Truth Social posts, he has reportedly “privately conveyed to allies” that he does not back Emmer.
Emmer is one of a number of Republicans — none of whom have been endorsed by Trump as of Saturday afternoon — who have thrown their hat in the ring for the speaker’s gavel and has emerged something of an early frontronner.
Politico noted that Kevin McCarthy — the man whose ouster as speaker was the catalyst for this mess — endorsed Emmer, but Team Trump is not nearly as convinced.
Politico pointed out that a number of pro-Trump platforms have grown increasingly vocal in their anti-Emmer sentiments of late.
“If somebody is so out of step with where the Republican electorate is, where the MAGA movement is, how can they even be in the conversation?” Boris Epshteyn, a top Trump adviser, said on a pro-Trump podcast on Friday.
Epshteyn also made it clear that no speaker was going to be able to get elected without the support of Trump and his wing of the GOP.
“We need a MAGA speaker. That’s what it comes down to. Because if you look at the numbers, if you look at the energy, if you look at the heat, this is the Trump party, this is the MAGA party. It is no longer the old-school khaki establishment Republican Party,” he said.
Whether or not this portends an attack from Trump himself remains to be seen, but the message is clear: Emmer does not have the support of MAGA, and that would likely spell doom for any Republican seeking the speaker role.
In fact, anything but wholesale and total support will likely not get a new speaker elected, as seen by what happened to fiery Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan.
Despite having Trump’s support, Jordan saw his support dwindle in three straight house floor votes as he failed to secure the 217 votes needed to win the speakership.
Democrats, meanwhile, are in steadfast lockstep with voting for House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, who simply doesn’t have enough votes to be elected.
That’s created a frustrating gridlock in the House of Representatives, with Democrats not having enough votes for their guy, even in total unity, while Republicans are too fractured to get enough votes for their guy.
And neither side seems particularly interested in working with each other, though some have speculated that it may be inevitable.
As of now, there is no clear path to 217 votes for any viable speaker candidate.