House GOP pick Minnesota Rep. Tom Emmer to serve as next Majority Whip

Even though a number of congressional races still remain undecided, the House Republican Conference held a closed-door meeting on Tuesday to elect by secret ballot their leadership team for the next term that begins in January.

Once all was said and done, Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN) had been picked as the next House Majority Whip, the critically important number three position of the leadership team, the Washington Examiner reported.

Emmer, who served as chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee over the past couple of cycles, beat out Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), chair of the conservative Republican Study Committee, as well as Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-GA), the chief deputy whip, for the consequential leadership slot.

“It is an honor to be entrusted by my colleagues with the role of Majority Whip,” Emmer said in a statement Tuesday night. “Now the hard work begins. It’s time to unite our conference and deliver on our promises to the American people.”

Emmer prevails over Banks

National Review reported that the Republican Whip contest was actually a competitive one in which Banks initially drew the most support, albeit not quite enough to win the position outright on the first ballot.

According to Politico reporter Olivia Beavers, Banks received 82 votes while Emmer and Ferguson received 72 and 71 votes, respectively.

Ferguson was then dropped as the race moved to a second ballot, and his supporters were then split between Banks and Emmer, with Emmer prevailing by a vote of 115 to 106.

Scalise picked as Majority Leader, McCarthy as Speaker-designate

According to The Hill, the House Republican Conference also held votes on who would be the next Majority Leader and Speaker-designate, though those races were not as competitive as the one for the Whip position.

Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), currently the House Minority Whip, was picked to serve as the Majority Leader in the next term.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who is currently the House Minority Leader, was chosen by the conference to be the Speaker-designate, though that won’t become official — and isn’t even guaranteed — until after the next term begins and an open vote is held on the chamber floor among all members of the House.

McCarthy, or whoever else may enter a bid to be the next House Speaker, would need to obtain the support of at least 218 members of the House.