Former Rep. Ben McAdams on electing a new speaker

Oct 19, 2023, 1:19 PM

Image of former Rep. Ben McAdams, who said that the search for a new Speaker of the House must incl...

FILE: Former Utah Rep Ben McAdams says the House of Representatives must seek bipartisanship in order to elect a new House speaker. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

(Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — While he was still in office, former congressman Ben McAdams, who represented Utah’s 4th Congressional District, was known for reaching across the aisle to work with House Democrats.

And as McAdams watches House Republicans try to elect a new speaker, he said he wonders if more of his former colleagues might be willing to work with Democrats.

McAdams told KSL NewsRadio that may be the only way the body can move toward a new speaker.


“There’s so many big things happening in the world right now,” he told KSL At Night, whether it’s the Hamas attack, a terrorist attack on Israel, or the challenges in Ukraine and across the globe.

We cannot afford to vacate the world stage.”

McAdams made the comments Wednesday, the same day that Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, failed for a second time to garner enough votes for the House speakership. The eventual winner needs the votes of 217 Representatives. Jordan got 200 votes on the first ballot, and 199 on the second.

McAdams says bipartisanship will garner a new speaker

McAdams said that there are just as many Democrats as Republicans in D.C. who seem to believe that “bipartisanship is a swear word.” But he said there are many who do want to see bipartisanship going forward.

“Democrats are looking for a consensus candidate who wants to unify and bring people together,” he said.

He doesn’t believe that Rep. Jordan is that candidate. On the other hand, he thinks that Utah’s own Rep. John Curtis could be that candidate. Or Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-NC, the current interim speaker.

“There are good people and good ideas on both sides,” McAdams said. “Let’s let both parties have a seat at the table, participate in the governance process.”

Related reading:

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Politics + Government

FILE - The Instagram app icon on the screen of a mobile device. With an eye on testing the Reels al...

Simone Seikaly

Instagram algorithm test “is scary,” says Utah state senator

Utah State Senator Mike McKell said Instagram's algorithm isn't alone in helping to target users for unsafe content.

2 hours ago

governor cox and several other people speak about his plan to address homelessness in utah...

Aimee Cobabe and Hugo Rikard-Bell

Gov. Cox releases budget plan to improve homelessness resources in Utah

Gov. Spencer Cox's office said Utah has gaps in how it addresses homelessness. His plans will attempt to close those gaps.

4 hours ago

Simone Seikaly

Democratic Rep. Brian King launches bid for Utah governor

King was elected to the Utah House in 2008, and though a Democratic governor is rare in Utah, King said voters want to move beyond labels.

6 hours ago

Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Japayal on Sunday reiterated her call for a ceasefire in Gaza, eve...

Casey Gannon, CNN

Rep. Pramila Jayapal stands by call for ceasefire in Gaza as fighting resumes

Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Japayal on Sunday reiterated her call for a ceasefire in Gaza, even as fighting has resumed.

1 day ago

Buoys meant to deter migrant crossings are anchored in the Rio Grande River in Eagle Pass, Texas, o...

Sara Weisfeldt and Kaanita Iyer, CNN

Federal appeals court orders Texas to remove controversial border buoys from Rio Grande

Texas has been ordered to remove its border buoys from the Rio Grande, in another victory for the Biden administration.

3 days ago

FILE - U.S. Rep. George Santos, R-N.Y., holds a miniature American flag that was presented to him a...

By Gregory Krieg, CNN

The race is already on for Santos’ New York seat as Hochul prepares to announce special election date

George Santos is gone from Congress, but his disastrous tenure will not be forgotten by party leaders as they prepare for what is expected to be a fiercely contested and expensive special election to replace him.

3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Human hand holding a protest banner stop vaping message over a crowded street background....

Prosperous Utah Communities

Utah’s Battle to Protect Youth from Vaping Epidemic Faces New Threat as Proposed Rule Threatens Progress

Utah's strict standards of nicotine levels in vaping products are at risk, increasing health hazards associated with use. Read more about how you can advocate for a better future for Utah's youth.

Aerial photo of Bear Lake shoreline with canopies and people camped out on the beach...

Visit Bear Lake

Last-Minute Summer Vacation Planning? Check Out Bear Lake!

Bear Lake is the perfect getaway if you are last-minute summer vacation planning. Enjoy activities with your whole family at this iconic lake.

Former Rep. Ben McAdams on electing a new speaker