Rep. John Boehner has officially been re-elected speaker of the House in the 113th United States Congress. Boehner was voted in by his colleagues on Thursday despite the recent severe backlash that came as a result of his handling of the deal to avoid the fiscal cliff.
While Boehner was up against Rep. Allen West, a tea party favorite from Florida, and GOP Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the vast majority of Republicans in the House shouted Boehner's name when called upon by the House's reading clerk.
According to CNN, Republicans, with 234 people in their conference, voted to re-elect the Ohio Republican to his leadership post during a tension-filled vote on the House floor. Reports indicate that some GOP lawmakers opted not to cast a vote, simply saying “present” when called upon.
In addition, Democratic Rep. Jim Cooper shunned his party's leader, Nancy Pelosi, to cast a vote for former Secretary of State Colin Powell (being a member of Congress is not a requirement to be elected speaker). Pelosi received a total of 192 votes.
House GOP leaders were reportedly confident in restoring Boehner as their speaker, telling reporters it was all but impossible for another representative to take his spot.
A CNN report cites the re-elected speaker himself saying he was confident the House would come through in his favor, again.
Just days before his re-election as speaker of the House, Boehner made headlines with a highly publicized fiscal cliff argument with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
According to a Democratic source familiar with the exchange, as cited by Politico, Boehner told Reid, “Go f*** yourself.”
Boehner's alleged comment, which took place at the White House, came one day after Reid took to the Senate floor on Thursday and characterized the House speaker's handling of his chamber as a "dictatorship."
On Wednesday, after news of the comment emerged, Reid said on the Senate floor that "unlike others behind us in this Capitol, I'm not going to stoop to name calling. I just want people to work and do what they need to do." Politico first reported Boehner's comment.