Friday, September 25, 2015

Does the Speaker of the House have to be a Member of the House?

Now that John Boehner has announced his resignation, there is an uproar regarding the selection of the next Speaker of the House.

Which raises the question - does the Speaker of the House actually have to be a Member of the House of Representatives?

In a word, no. Even the House itself says as much:

Article I, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution states, "The House of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers."

Although the Constitution does not require the Speaker to be a Member of the House, all Speakers have been Members.

Given the current climate in the country, in which many outside the Beltway are literally rejoicing over Boehner's departure, there is always the possibility that a true outsider could gain the Speakership.

But who would want to do a thing like that?

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