Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, has been chosen House majority leader, according to CNN. Boehner defeated Rep. Roy Blunt of Missouri, 122-109, after lagging behind his rival in a first, inconclusive ballot.
U.S. Rep. John Boehner of Ohio upset a former deputy to indicted Texan Tom DeLay on Thursday to become majority leader of the scandal-rocked U.S. House of Representatives.
Rep. Roy Blunt had appeared to be the front-runner, based on a long list of public commitments, but Boehner, who campaigned on a vow to seek to renew the party’s “spirit and vision,” defeated Blunt and Rep. John Shadegg of Arizona in a secret election by fellow Republicans.
Boehner had 122 votes to Blunt’s 109. Shadegg dropped out after a first ballot loss.
Boehner’s election represented a shake-up in the House leadership, as Republicans effectively gave a vote of no-confidence to Blunt, the acting majority leader and a close ally of DeLay.
But Blunt will remain in the House Republican leadership, holding onto his job as majority whip, the person responsible for making sure Republican-backed bills pass the House.
Blunt became acting majority leader in September after DeLay was forced under House Republican rules to step down when he was indicted in Texas on campaign-related felony charges.
In January, DeLay, under pressure from members, announced he would not seek to reclaim the job after lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a close associate, pleaded guilty in a mushrooming influence-peddling investigation that threatens the Republicans hold on Congress.