House GOP’s razor-thin majority gets a little wider with Ohio special election victory

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., got a bit of breathing room on Tuesday night when Republican Michael Rulli won the special election to replace retired Rep. Bill Johnson, R-Ohio.Rulli is an Ohio state senator and a small business owner who touts himself as a “big natural gas guy,” according to the Ohio Capital Journal. His family started and runs Youngstown-based grocery stores called Rulli Brothers Market, his campaign website stated. He was also president of the Leetonia School Board in Northern Ohio. US ENERGY FUTURE ‘UNDER THREAT’ FROM BIDEN POLICIES: GOP REPORTRulli’s website also lists “priorities for Ohio families,” which include “energy independence,” the “right to bear arms” and “election integrity,” among other issues.The local Ohio official was the favorite to win in the Buckeye State’s deep red 6th congressional district, which former President Trump won by more than 40 points in 2020.EXPERTS REVEAL MAJOR ‘DOWNSIDE’ TO POTENTIAL TRUMP VP PICK: ‘NO WOW FACTOR’His victory and eventual swearing-in will bring the total number of Republicans in the House GOP up to 219. It means Republican leaders can afford to lose three votes on any party-line measure, marginally better than the two-seat majority it’s been navigating for weeks.Once sworn in, Rulli will serve out the rest of former Rep. Johnson’s term until November.Johnson announced in November 2023 that he would be leaving the House to become president of Youngstown State University.WATCH: POSSIBLE TRUMP VP PICK MAKES MAJOR PREDICTION ABOUT BLACK VOTERS AS BIDEN BLEEDS SUPPORT”After much thought and prayerful deliberation, I have accepted the offer to lead Youngstown State University and will not be seeking an 8th term in Congress,” Johnson wrote on X. “As I’ve stated previously, I wasn’t looking for another job, because I love the one I have serving the people of Eastern Ohio in the U.S. House. This was an extremely difficult decision.”He left in late January of this year, just weeks after the departure of ex-Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.
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