Is Speaker John Boehner in trouble? Rocky road ahead?

From FNC Chad Pergram:

I should add to this….

Watch the markets today. We had a few lawmakers on tape last night fretting about what might happen on Wall Street. Dow futures were down overnight. Some believe that a major market reaction could be exactly what they need to rattle people and force a deal…ala TARP in September, 2008. But we’re not there yet.

Remember, the usual traders won’t be around due to the holidays and that could potentially force wilder market swings based on lighter volume.

One of the biggest points of chatter over the next few days will be if Boehner can survive. Remember, the entire House will vote for Speaker January 3rd. The new breakdown in the 113th Congress will be 233 R and 200 D with two vacancies.

The rule is the Speaker of the House must have a majority OF THOSE VOTING, plus one. That means if everyone votes, Boehner can only lost 17 on his side. He lost 21 on last night’s vote. Pelosi had 19 of hers vote against her in January of 2011.

In short, getting to 17 who vote against Boehner is nothing.

So what happens? The House continues to vote UNTIL IT HAS A SPEAKER.

The election for Speaker hasn’t gone to a second ballot since 1856 and before that, 1849. It took months and 63 ballots before settling on a Speaker. Keep in mind, the contested election between Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr only took 30 rounds of balloting after it was cast into the House.

There will be a lot of chatter about if Boehner is doomed. But here’s the problem: there’s not an obvious figure waiting in the wings.

But know this: Boehner tends to have nine lives. Remember this, Boehner is a guy who was purged from leadership in 1998 only to come back years later.  I’ve covered him since 1988. In his 1990 election for Congress, he ran in a primary against a sitting (and badly tarnished due a sex scandal) sitting Congressman and a former Congress in a brutal three way primary. A month before the primary, he did not get the party endorsement of the county GOP in his home county (also the largest county in his district by far). There was a picture of him on the front page of the local paper the next morning, staring at the ground, being consoled by a friend.

Boehner rallied and won the primary a month later.

Chad Pergram
FOX News
Senior Producer for Capitol Hill

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