Steve Scalise, the House Majority Leader and a veteran of GOP leadership, is vying to become the next speaker of the House after Kevin McCarthy was ousted by his own party in a historic vote.
Scalise, a nine-term congressman from Louisiana, faces competition from Jim Jordan, the chair of the House Judiciary Committee, who has the endorsement of former President Donald Trump.
Scalise has said that he believes the House Republican conference is a family and that he wants to unify the party and advance its agenda. He has also touted his experience as a whip, a role focused on vote counting and ensuring support for key party priorities.
Scalise is no stranger to adversity and challenges. In 2017, he was shot and seriously wounded by a gunman who targeted Republicans during a practice for a charity baseball game. He underwent several surgeries and returned to Congress on September 28, 2017.
In August 2023, he announced that he had been diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a type of blood cancer. He said that his cancer had dropped dramatically after treatment.
Scalise was born on October 6, 1965, in New Orleans, Louisiana. He graduated from Louisiana State University and worked as a software engineer and a marketing executive before entering politics. Steve Scalise is married to Jennifer Letulle and has two children.
Steve Scalise has represented Louisiana’s 1st congressional district in the United States House of Representatives since 2008. He is the first Louisiana to serve as majority whip since Hale Boggs in 1971. Steve Scalise is known for his work on conservative issues and his support for Trump.
He supported objections to electoral college results when Congress met to certify Joe Biden’s presidential win on January 6, 2021, the same day a pro-Trump mob attacked the Capitol seeking to overturn the election.
The House remains paralyzed and leaderless thanks to infighting among conservative Republicans. Scalise hopes to win enough support from his colleagues to become the speaker and end the chaos.