United States Speaker of the House

The presiding officer elected by the members of the U.S. House is known as the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

The Speaker earns a higher wage than other members of Congress, making $223,500 annually.[1].

The present speaker is Kevin McCarthy, a Republican who represents the Congressional District 20 of California.


The establishment of the office took place in 1789 as per Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution of the United States.

The Constitution of the United States, Article I Section 2:.

The House of Representatives shall select their Speaker and other Officers…

The position has never been chosen by any non-member, but the Constitution does not mandate that the speaker be a elected member of Congress.


When Congress convenes for the first time, the Speaker nominates a candidate from each major party caucus or conference. Customarily, the Speaker elects members by calling for a roll call vote. Any member can vote for any person, regardless of whether they have been nominated, but usually, members from their own caucus or conference vote for the candidate.

In order to be elected, a candidate must receive an absolute majority of the votes cast, which means they can be elected if they receive more votes than any other candidate. Members of the House can choose to vote “present” instead of casting a vote for a candidate if they are absent or if there are vacancies in the House.

Click the hyperlinks provided below to access further information regarding the latest Speaker elections:

  • 2023 U.S. House leadership elections.
  • U.S. House leadership elections, 2021.
  • 2019 Elections for House Leadership in the United States.
  • Duties

    The Speaker fulfills various roles, including:[2].

  • Leads the House.
  • Administers the Pledge of Allegiance to Members of the House.
  • Engages in communication with the President of the United States and the Senate of the United States.
  • Chairs their party conference or caucus.
  • Chairs their party’s steering committee, which is engaged in the selection of party members for standing committees.
  • Appoints chairs and members of the Committee on Rules and the Committee on House Administration.
  • The Speaker also designates:[2].

  • Temporary speakers.
  • The chairperson who presides over the Committee of the Whole House regarding the condition of the Union.
  • Members assigned to House-Senate conference committees.
  • A Representative to the Budget Committee.
  • Select committees.
  • Certain members of the House staff.
  • The Speaker of the House, who is also a member of the Select Committee on Intelligence, serves ex officio on the committee. The Speaker occasionally votes or debates, but typically only does so. The Speaker makes many important decisions and rulings in the House. The Speaker recognizes Members to make motions or speak on the House Floor.