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Biden team sees 2024 opportunity with Republicans’ new speaker, and more campaign takeaways

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(WASHINGTON) — The House at last has a new speaker and the 2024 presidential field has thoughts.

Meanwhile, Vivek Ramaswamy says he’s scheduled another debate — but not with a GOP rival. And Nikki Haley picked up a notable endorsement.

Here are campaign takeaways for Wednesday:

Republican hopefuls weigh in on new Speaker Mike Johnson

Mike Johnson’s election by his Republican colleagues in the House ended three weeks in which the chamber didn’t have a leader — paralyzing half of Congress.

In the wake of his win, Republican candidates have struck a supportive tone.

Notably, however, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said he “vehemently” disagrees with Johnson’s actions in support of blocking the certification of the 2020 presidential election results but said that he wants to judge Johnson based on his upcoming actions.

Former President Donald Trump tied Johnson’s victory to his own “strong SUGGESTION” on social media to back Johnson, later telling reporters in New York: “I wanted to congratulate Mike Johnson, who will be a great speaker of the House, and we were very happy to help. I’ve known him for a long time.”

Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson was more succinct, writing on social media: “I, like most Americans, am eager to see Congress get back to work. Best of luck in your leadership position, Mr. Speaker!”

Biden and team react

Joe Biden’s reaction as president was cordial and discussed working together with Johnson — but his campaign’s rhetoric was much more critical of the new speaker, labeling him “MAGA Mike” and echoing how Biden has sought to single out a segment of Trump-aligned Republicans as “MAGA” extremists.

“The American people have made clear that they expect House Republicans to work with me and with Senate Democrats to govern across the aisle – to protect our urgent national security interests and grow our economy for the middle class,” Biden said in his statement.

But a campaign spokesperson said, in part, “The American people have rejected the extreme MAGA ideology at the ballot box because they understand what’s at stake. And so to every MAGA Republican who supported this choice: We’ll see you in November.”

Ro vs. Ramaswamy?

Ramaswamy, an entrepreneur and commentator who has built a national profile while running for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, now says he’s scheduled a location and date to debate Democratic Rep. Ro Khanna of California — an event the two have gone back and forth over for months.

Ramaswamy and Khanna will finally face off at St. Anselm College in New Hamsphire on Nov. 1, the campaign says, though the school isn’t confirming the event yet and Khanna hasn’t commented.

While the Republican Party has been strict in preventing debates with 2024 candidates that involve only Republicans, they have allowed others — like an upcoming event between California’s Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Haley gets a boost in N.H.

Former U.N. Ambassador Haley received the endorsement of Judd Gregg, a former New Hampshire governor and senator, who wrote in the local Union Leader newspaper that she is an “exceptionally strong leader” who can “not only bring our party together but importantly the nation together.”

The endorsement is a major pick-up for Haley, who is currently sitting in second place in the state, according to the latest 538 polling average — though still nearly 30 points behind Trump, the front-runner.

“Granite Staters are ready to leave the drama behind & elect a new generational leader. I’m honored to have Sen. Gregg’s support,” Haley wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.

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