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Steve Scalise
Steve Scalise 116th Congress official photo.jpg
Official portrait, 2019
House Majority Leader
Assumed office
January 3, 2023
Speaker Kevin McCarthy
Patrick McHenry (pro tempore)
Whip Tom Emmer
Preceded by Steny Hoyer
House Minority Whip
In office
January 3, 2019 – January 3, 2023
Leader Kevin McCarthy
Preceded by Steny Hoyer
Succeeded by Katherine Clark
House Majority Whip
In office
August 1, 2014 – January 3, 2019
Speaker John Boehner
Paul Ryan
Preceded by Kevin McCarthy
Succeeded by Jim Clyburn
Chair of the Republican Study Committee
In office
January 3, 2013 – August 1, 2014
Preceded by Jim Jordan
Succeeded by Rob Woodall
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Louisiana's 1st district
Assumed office
May 3, 2008
Preceded by Bobby Jindal
Member of the Louisiana Senate
from the 9th district
In office
January 14, 2008 – May 6, 2008
Preceded by Ken Hollis
Succeeded by Conrad Appel
Member of the Louisiana House of Representatives
from the 82nd district
In office
January 8, 1996 – January 14, 2008
Preceded by Quentin Dastugue
Succeeded by Cameron Henry
Personal details
Stephen Joseph Scalise

(1965-10-06) October 6, 1965 (age 58)
New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
Political party Republican
Jennifer Letulle
(m. 2005)
Children 2
Alma mater Louisiana State University (BS)

Stephen Joseph Scalise ( SKƏ-lease; born October 6, 1965) is an American politician who serves as the House Majority Leader and representative for LA's 1st congressional district. A member of the Republican Party, he served as the House Minority Whip from 2019 to 2023. Scalise is in his ninth House term, having held his seat since 2008. The district includes most of New Orleans's suburbs, such as Metairie, Kenner, and Slidell, as well as a portion of New Orleans itself.

Scalise was the Republican nominee in the October 2023 Speaker of the House election, following the removal of Kevin McCarthy, but dropped out after failing to consolidate the necessary votes.

Early life and education

Scalise was born in New Orleans, one of three children of Alfred Joseph Scalise, a real estate broker who died on October 8, 2015, at the age of 77, and Carol Schilleci. His siblings are Glenn and Tara Scalise.

Scalise's great-grandparents immigrated to the United States from Italy in the late 1800s. He graduated from Archbishop Rummel High School in Metairie in Jefferson Parish and earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Louisiana State University (LSU) in Baton Rouge with a major in computer science and a minor in political science. At LSU, Scalise was a member of the Acacia Fraternity. He serves on the board of the American Italian Renaissance Foundation, servicing the American Italian Cultural Center.


President Bush with Congressman Scalise
Scalise with President George W. Bush in 2008
Donald Trump with Steve Scalise
Scalise with President Donald Trump in 2018

Before his election to Congress, Scalise served four months in the Louisiana State Senate and three terms in the Louisiana House of Representatives. He was the chair of the House Republican Study Committee from 2013 to 2014. On June 19, 2014, Scalise's Republican colleagues elected him majority whip of the United States House of Representatives. He assumed office on August 1. He is the first Louisianian to serve as majority whip since Hale Boggs of Louisiana's 2nd congressional district held the position from 1962 to 1971. In 2017, Scalise became the dean of the Louisiana congressional delegation upon Senator David Vitter's retirement.

In 2011, Scalise became a co-sponsor of Bill H.R. 3261, otherwise known as the Stop Online Piracy Act (withdrawn January 23, 2012). As chairman of the Republican Study Committee, Scalise dismissed Derek Khanna, a committee staffer, in December 2012 because of pressure from content industry lobbyists after the study committee published a memo advocating copyright reform.

In December 2017, Scalise voted in favor of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Scalise says that the bill will "put more money in the pockets of hard-working families."

On January 6, 2021, Scalise voted to de-certify President-elect Biden's victories in Arizona and Pennsylvania.

Scalise condemned the Capitol attack as terrorism and compared it to the Congressional baseball shooting.

In February 2021, more than a month after Joe Biden's inauguration, Scalise refused to acknowledge that the election was not stolen or fraudulent. In May 2021, he called for the ouster of Liz Cheney as House Republican Conference Chair due to her vote to impeach Trump for inciting a mob to attack the U.S. Capitol. On May 19, 2021, Scalise and the seven other House Republican leaders voted against establishing a national commission to investigate the January 6, 2021, attack on the United States Capitol Complex. Thirty-five House Republicans and all 217 Democrats present voted to establish such a commission.

On October 3, 2023 Kevin McCarthy was removed as Speaker of the House. Days later, House Republicans chose Scalise over Jim Jordan as their candidate for Speaker of the House, by a margin of 113 to 99. After failing to consolidate the necessary 217 Republican votes to become the Speaker of the House, Scalise withdrew his name from consideration as a nominee for the Speakership.

Committee assignments

  • Committee on Energy and Commerce
    • Subcommittee on Communications and Technology
    • Subcommittee on Energy and Power
    • Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations
  • Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis (Ranking Member)

Caucus memberships

  • Congressional Western Caucus
  • Republican Study Committee

Political positions


Scalise supported President Donald Trump's 2017 executive order temporarily banning citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S. He stated, "It's very prudent to say, 'Let's be careful about who comes into our country to make sure that they're not terrorists.'"

Health care

Scalise opposes the Affordable Care Act. Scalise applauded a Texas district court ruling the Affordable Care Act was unconstitutional in its entirety.

Gun law

Scalise has been an opponent of gun control and was given an "A+ rating" and endorsed by the NRA Political Victory Fund.

In 2018, Scalise co-sponsored a bill to "strengthen school safety and security", which required a two-thirds vote for passage given that it was brought up under an expedited process known as Suspension of the Rules. The House voted 407–10 to approve the bill, which would "provide $50 million a year for a new federal grant program to train students, teachers and law enforcement on how to spot and report signs of gun violence". Named STOP (Students, Teachers, and Officers Preventing) School Violence Act, it would "develop anonymous telephone and online systems where people could report threats of violence." At the same time, it would authorize $25 million for schools to improve and harden their security, such as installing new locks, lights, metal detectors and panic buttons. A separate spending bill would be required to provide money for the grant program.

LGBT rights

According to the Washington Blade, Scalise has one of "the most anti-LGBT reputations of any lawmaker". He opposed the repeal of the US military's Don't Ask Don't Tell policy. He also opposes same-sex marriage. Scalise condemned the Supreme Court decision Obergefell v. Hodges, which held that same-sex marriage bans violate the constitution.


Scalise rejects the scientific consensus on climate change. He has on multiple occasions claimed that the scientific community predicted global cooling in the 1970s, which is not true.

Personal life

A Roman Catholic, Scalise married Jennifer Ann Letulle on April 9, 2005. They have two children.

See also

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