The question before the state Capitol is whether Speaker pro tem Mark Burkhalter, who four weeks from today is scheduled to drop the “pro tem” from that title, will face a challenge from within the House Republican caucus.
Burkhalter has worked throughout most of today to create an atmosphere of fait accompli.
But my AJC colleague Aaron Gould Sheinin just finished a conversation with state Rep. David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) who last year engineered an unsuccessful challenge to House Speaker Glenn Richardson.
We’ll let you parse what Ralston said:
“There’s a lot of discussions going on. I haven’t made calls [about running for speaker]. I’ve received calls. But there are a lot of discussions going on. I think that’s to be expected. We’ll kind of see how things play out here over the days or weeks.
“I think there is a significant amount of serious concern amongst Republican members of the state House over what I would describe as the lack of outreach and the lack of communication over the past few days. A feeling that maybe decisions were being made and were going to be handed down as accomplished facts without any input from rank-and-file members.
“I also think there is some concern, quite frankly, over what allowed us to get into this situation as a caucus. I think it’s those two things that are causing a fair amount of concern and discussion. But I think, it’s things that will lead to some healthy discussions and, ultimately, we’ll all be the better for it.”
All of which should make for an interesting weekend.
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