DARKE COUNTY — U.S. Representative John Boehner announced Friday morning that he will resign his House seat and his speakership at the end of October.
Boehner has represented Ohio’s 8th Congressional District since Jan. 3, 1991. He has served as Speaker of the House since Jan. 5, 2011, following the Republican Party winning a majority in the House in the 2010 elections.
A spokesperson for Boehner’s office told the Daily Advocate:
“Speaker Boehner believes that the first job of any Speaker is to protect this institution and, as we saw yesterday with the Holy Father, it is the one thing that unites and inspires us all.”
“The Speaker’s plan was to serve only through the end of last year. Leader Cantor’s loss in his primary changed that calculation.”
“The Speaker believes putting members through prolonged leadership turmoil would do irreparable damage to the institution.”
“He is proud of what this majority has accomplished, and his Speakership, but for the good of the Republican Conference and the institution, he will resign the Speakership and his seat in Congress, effective October 30.”
Some conservatives welcomed his announcement.
Rep. Tim Huelskamp of Kansas said “it’s time for new leadership,” and Rep. Tom Massie of Kentucky said the speaker “subverted our Republic.”
“I think it was inevitable,” Massie said. “This is a condition of his own making right here.”
But other Republicans said it would be a pyrrhic victory for so-called “Tea Partyers.”
“The honor of John Boehner this morning stands in stark contrast to the idiocy of those members who seek to continually divide us,” said Rep. David Jolly of Florida.
“The shutdown caucus as I call them has a small victory,” Jolly said.
J.D. Winteregg, who has announced his candidacy for Boehner’s seat, told the Daily Advocate:
“I’d like to thank the Speaker for his service and I wish him all the best in his retirement. I’ve been working to return this seat to the constituents in Ohio’s 8th district and to ensure that they have the representation they deserve. I look forward to being their voice in DC, and I can’t wait to be a part of a new generation of principled Republican leadership.”
Boehner’s decision removes the possibility of a damaging vote to strip him of his speakership, a scenario that grew more likely amid the conservative clamor over a shutdown.
AP reporters Erica Werner and Alan Fram contributed to this report.
Erik Martin may be reached by email at email@example.com or by phone at 937-569-4314.