WASHINGTON - In an unexpected development, Congressman Steve Scalise won Majority Whip over Illinois Congressman Peter Roskam in a secret ballot vote Thursday afternoon.
Sources tell Illinois Review that the primary reason why Roskam lost is that he's been DC-focused and failed to be involved in Illinois or to help Illinois congressional candidates. As a result, Illinois Congressman Aaron Schock ended up leading the charge for Scalise.
UPDATE x2: Because of Schock's help in the Scalise victory, expect him to be rewarded, likely with position of Deputy Whip - the very position that Roskam held when McCarthy was Majority Whip.
Scalise shocked Roskam (no pun intended) when he won the the position on the first ballot. Roskam was telling media over the weekend he was confident he would win on a second ballot. Scalise got the needed 117 in the first vote.
Who is Scalise? He's the U.S. Representative for Louisiana's 1st congressional district, serving since 2008. He serves as the chairman of the 170-member conservative House Republican Study Committee.
UPDATE x3: In a statement, Roskam said:
It has been my honor and privilege these past eight days to engage with our Members in a robust discussion on how to move our conference and our country in a better direction. Eric’s loss was a shock to all of us, and as we move forward we must do so united in the fight against the policies that are holding our economy and our people back. I wholeheartedly congratulate Steve on his election. He ran a great race and I look forward to working together to achieve conservative policy wins that improve the lives of the American people.