House Republican Conference

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This article assumes a Republican majority In the U.S. House of Representatives, the House Republican Conference is an important part of the U.S. Republican Party leadership, but differs in focus from other leadership roles such as the House Majority Leader and House Majority Whip. Those functions are concerned with managing the Republican contribution to specific legislation, while the Conference is concerned with setting Republican policy, and also with electing the leadership. The Speaker of the House is both the highest-ranking member of the Republican leadership, but also has House-wide functions, and is in the order of succession to the Presidency .

The Conference also maintains the official House Republican website.[1]

The Conference chair is considered the fourth-ranking member of the Republican leadership, and may serve two consecutive terms.

2010 race

In 2010, Rep. Mike Pence (Indiana) has served his terms, and supports
Rep. Jeb Hensarling of Texas, and top Republicans are making it clear that he is the insider’s choice. Minority Whip Eric Cantor of Virginia and outgoing Conference Chairman Mike Pence of Indiana already have endorsed Hensarling." [2]
Hensarling has been introduced by established conservatives such as Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who wrote "Jeb's economic expertise and strong ability to communicate are what we need in our conference chairman to articulate our unified commitment to get our country back on track,.This position requires someone who has a command of these issues and has a history of successfully debating them.” Hensarling also picked up the support of Rep. Spencer Bachus (Alabama), who is the top Republican on the House Financial Services Committee. “In his role as Chairman of the Republican Study Committee, Jeb has earned nationwide respect for his opposition to socialized health care and strong advocacy for fiscal responsibility and smaller government” [3]

They oppose the candidacy of Michele Bachmann (Wisconsin), who started the Tea Party Caucus and claims a mandate. She said she belongs in the leadership because it needs a constitutional conservative such as herself. [4] A leadership role that historically involves building consensus, however, may clash with her strong ideology. The Washington Post suggests she is unlikely to win the post, as she lacks House seniority and a strong following there, although she is nationally visible.[5]

Bachmann's appeal to fellow Republicans is based not on her House leadership experience, but what she brings from the election: “strong principled conservative values, a proven level of experience, effectiveness with our friends in the local and national media, and an energetic national constituency that reflects the results of Tuesday night. It is important that our conference demonstrate to the people who sent us here that their concerns will be tirelessly advanced at the table of leadership.” [3]


  1. the Website of Republicans in Congress, House Republican Conference
  2. Jake Sherman (4 November 2010), "Bachmann vs Hensarling race heats up", Politico
  3. 3.0 3.1 Jake Sherman and John Bresnahan (4 November 2010), "Bachmann leadership bid adds drama", Politico
  4. Molly Hooper (3 November 2010), "Race for Republican leadership posts starting to heat up", The Hill
  5. Amy Gardner and David A. Fahrenthold (4 November 2010), "For tea party, victories may trigger identity crisis", Washington Post