Mike Johnson: Who is the new Republican speaker of the US House?

   (Tom Brenner / AFP via Getty Images)
(Tom Brenner / AFP via Getty Images)

Mike Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana and a supporter of Donald Trump, has been nominated as the US House Speaker.

The 51-year-old politician was the fourth Republican to be put forward for the role, and the only one to receive enough votes to earn the gavel.

It marks an end to weeks of chaos and bitter in-fighting among Republicans after Kevin McCarthy was dramatically ousted by more extreme players of his own party.

Johnson has now become the one of most powerful politicians on Capitol Hill and will hold considerable power in future congressional debates and bills.

So who is Mike Johnson and where does he stand on the most important political topics?

Mike Johnson surrounded by House Republicans after being elected as the speaker nominee (Win McNamee / Getty Images)
Mike Johnson surrounded by House Republicans after being elected as the speaker nominee (Win McNamee / Getty Images)

Who is Mike Johnson?

Johnson is now the 56th US House Speaker of the House of Representatives.

He identifies as a hard-right conservative Christian who has previously opposed LGBTQ+ and abortion rights.

Born and raised in Louisiana, he worked in law before venturing into politics. He served as a lawyer for the Alliance Defense Fund, a Christian advocacy group that wanted to expand Christian practices in schools and government. The group is now known as the Alliance Defending Freedom.

Apparently, experience isn’t necessary for the speaker job

Republican senator Mitt Romney

In 2015, Johnson was nominated to the Louisiana House of Representatives and, two years later, he stepped into the US House of Representatives.

During his time in Congress, the new speaker has made no secret of his right-leaning political stance. He's consistently opposed abortion rights and even tried to make it illegal for those aged under 18 to cross state lines to get an abortion without parental consent.

Johnson also serves as a deputy whip for the Republicans. However, he remained a relatively unknown figure in politics in comparison to firebrands such as Jim Jordan. Some politicians have already expressed concern that Johnson is underqualified.

Republican senator Mitt Romney reportedly told a journalist: “Apparently, experience isn’t necessary for the speaker job.”

“We’re down to folks who haven’t had leadership or chairmanship roles, which means their administration of the House will be a new experience for them.”

Johnson has also expressed a harsh stance on gay people, suggesting that same-sex relationships are 'inherently unnatural'

What is Mike Johnson's voting record?

According to his voting record, Johnson has consistently been against abortion rights as well as expressed opposition to LGBTQ+ rights and same-sex marriage.

According to Republican Don Beyer, who addressed the appointment on Twitter: "Johnson is one of the biggest anti-choice extremists in Congress, he wants to ban all abortions without exception – to the point of criminalisation with prison sentences".

Johnson has also expressed a harsh stance on gay people, suggesting that same-sex relationships are "inherently unnatural".

He's also raised questions about climate science, telling a 2017 town hall: “The climate is changing, but the question is, is it being caused by natural cycles over the span of the Earth’s history? Or is it changing because we drive SUVs? I don’t believe in the latter."

Ties to election result denial

Mike Johnson was linked to attempts at overturning the election results that gave Joe Biden the presidency.

Despite numerous failed attempts by Republicans to discount election results in 2021, Johnson continued to try to object to the outcome.

He also previously wrote on Twitter: "President Trump called me last night and I was encouraged to hear his continued resolve to ensure that every LEGAL vote gets properly counted, and that all instances of fraud and illegality are investigated and prosecuted."

When a lawsuit was launched in Texas in an attempt to throw out millions of ballots, Johnson was one of the leading figures supporting it via a brief by members of Congress.

What has Mike Johnson said about becoming speaker?

Ina post on X (formerly Twitter), Johnson said, "As Speaker, I will ensure the House delivers results and inspires change for the American people. We will restore trust in this body. We will advance a comprehensive conservative policy agenda."