Dark horse candidate may seek House speaker role if GOP wins in 2022

It’s unclear if former President Trump will again run for the Oval Office in 2024.

But another issue is whether Mr. Trump may care to be speaker of the House when the new Congress begins on Jan. 3, 2023.

Some of that conjecture started to churn again over the weekend when the former president held a campaign-style rally in Wellington, Ohio.

This all got stirred up recently when House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., appeared to suggest during an interview on Fox that the former president wanted to be speaker, should Republicans claim control of the House in the 2022 midterms. McCarthy's aides immediately mopped this up. They said the former president wants McCarthy to preside as speaker if the GOP flips the House next year.

But whether President Trump could emerge as the 55th speaker of the House raises a very interesting question: could it actually happen?

There were suggestions that the former president may try to seek a seat in Congress, representing Palm Beach, Florida, home to Mar-a-Lago. In an interview with Wayne Allyn Root, Trump argued that becoming speaker "might be better." He described the possibility as "very interesting."

The problem with that is former President Trump is registered to vote in the 21st Congressional District of Florida, currently held by Rep. Lois Frankel, D-Fla. The district favors Democrats by eight points. Frankel vanquished her GOP opponent, Laura Loomer, by 20 points. The former president even lost to President Biden on his home turf, 58% to 41%. . In other developments: - Watters: 'DeSantis variant' of Trump Derangement Syndrome evident in new online outrage - CNN's Chris Cuomo takes indirect swipe at ABC's Jon Karl for trying to 'rehab Trumpers' following Barr report - Sen. Tim Scott launches 2022 reelection bid, saying it’s time ‘to go back to the future’ - Finally, agreement in Washington, and it lasted a whole five minutes - McConnell blasts Dems' infrastructure strategy, accuses Schumer, Pelosi of holding bipartisan deal ‘hostage’

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., was sharply criticized over the weekend following her claim that concern from people over the spike in crime rates across the country amounted to "hysteria."

During a conversation with Rep. Jamaal Bowman, D-N.Y., over Zoom, Ocasio-Cortez seemingly cast doubt over the data showing crime rates rising in cities throughout the U.S., especially in New York, where shooting incidents and murders have risen 53% and 13% since the beginning of the year.

"We are seeing these headlines about percentage increases," Ocasio-Cortez said. "Now, I want to say that any amount of harm is unacceptable and too much, but I also want to make sure that this hysteria, you know, that this doesn’t drive a hysteria and that we look at these numbers in context so that we can make responsible decisions about what to allocate in that context."

The far-left "Squad" member was lambasted by critics on social media following the comments, with some calling them "shameful," and others mocking her for downplaying crime statistics while feeding into premonitions of the world ending due to climate change. . In other developments: - AOC joins climate change protesters accused of blocking entrance to WH - Curtis Sliwa plans to crack down on crime as NYC mayor - Guardian Angels' Sliwa, NYC GOP nominee: I'll end 'All-Out-Crazy' AOC's, de Blasio's 'handcuffing' of NYPD - Meghan McCain: 'Defund the police ... was the stupidest thing I ever heard' Just three years before a high-rise condominium collapsed in Florida Thursday, a local building official told board members that the building was in "very good shape" despite warnings from an engineer about structural problems.

Former Surfside building official Rosendo "Ross" Prieto made the comments during a meeting of the Champlain Towers South board on Nov. 15, 2018, according to the minutes of the meeting released after the collapse. But about a month earlier, a report from Morabito Consultants, an engineering firm, pointed out flaws in the building ahead of work that would be needed for the building to meet 40-year recertification in 2021, documents show.

The engineering report found that the pool deck's waterproofing had failed and was not sloped to drain water. That was a concern for the concrete slab under the pool and other parts of the structure. It also pointed to "abundant cracking" in concrete columns and beams.

"Failure to replace the waterproofing in the near future will cause the extent of the concrete deterioration to expand exponentially," the report states.

However, Prieto said during the meeting that the engineering report showed "the building is in very good shape," the minutes show. And he told the then-town manager in an email the next day that the building was off to a positive start for its recertification as required by local law. . In other developments: - Woman told husband on phone she saw pool cave in before building fell, report says - Remembering the dead and missing as officials confirm 10th victim - Miami condo collapse leaves man assuming he’ll never see his mom, grandma again

- Heatwave nationwide sees temperatures soar - Psaki casts GOP as party of 'defund the police' after slogan backfires on Democrats - Los Angeles deputies detain mom after 3 children found dead inside home - Ex-NBA coach Jeff Van Gundy: 'I’m sick of the sissification of the game' - Gwen Berry, flag-snubbing US track and field star, defended by the White House

- Why some vaccinated people may be back at the doctors soon - Playboy owner to buy lingerie retailer for over $330M - United Airlines closes in on $30B post-pandemic jet order - Child tax credit 2021: This is the last day to opt out of payments - McConnell urges Biden to pressure Pelosi, Schumer on infrastructure bill

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