Republican John Ratcliffe's House seat up for grabs

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC)-- The sign on his office is coming down and John Ratcliffe is moving out.

The sign outside Rep. Ratcliffe's former office in the Cannon House Office Building on Tuesday, May 26. The sign was removed Wednesday following his swearing-in as DNI. (Source: Gray DC)

With the former Texas congressman officially sworn in as the Director of National Intelligence, his seat as the fourth district’s Representative is vacant for the time being.

The constituents will have no one voting on their behalf in Congress during this period but Georgetown University professor Mark Rom said that may not matter.

“The Democrats have a 233-197 margin in the House, so the Democrats can pass what they want," Rom said.

In August, Republican leaders in the district will form a “Congressional District Executive Committee” to pick Ratcliffe’s replacement on the November ballot. That candidate, Rom said, will likely win the seat.

“Republicans are going to win this district," Rom said. "Ratcliffe won by 75 percent to 25 percent last time, so this is a very solid Republican district.”

And several Republicans are tossing their hast in the ring to nab the nomination.

The candidates—including Ratcliffe's former chief of staff Jason Ross, former TX-32 candidate Floyd McLendon and former TX-18 candidate T.C Manning— said this is different than a primary. They're campaigning to party leaders rather than the voters.

“I’m feeling great about this process,” Ross said.

“I look at it more like I'm interviewing rather than campaigning,” McLendon said.

"It's easier and it's harder," Manning said.

The committee will make their final decision who will take over the seat on August 8th.

Some also anticipate that Joseph Brown, the former US Attorney for the Eastern District, will soon step up to run for the seat as well. Brown announced his departure from his office last week, and has not yet commented on his intentions.
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