Rep. Mike Collins channels speaker battle frustration through memes ‘with a little help’

Mike Collin
Rep. Mike Collins (R-GA) speaks to reporters following a closed-door meeting of the House Republican Conference at the Capitol in Washington, July 18, 2023. J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Rep. Mike Collins channels speaker battle frustration through memes ‘with a little help’

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Rep. Mike Collins (R-GA) has been poking fun at the House Republicans’ inability to elect a speaker of the House through a series of colorful memes posted to X, formerly Twitter.

And the congressman said he is posting the humorous images himself — with some help.


Asked if he runs his social media on his own, Collins told the Washington Examiner in an interview Friday, “Let’s just put it this way: You know how that works. I do get a lot of help from my friends.”

“When the comms director gets back from her wedding week off, y’all please tell her I’ve been behaving,” the Georgia Republican wrote Thursday on X.

The memes began on Oct. 12 after House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) had been nominated for speaker in conference the day prior but a floor vote hadn’t been scheduled.

The first post, featuring an image from the popular comedy program The Eric Andre Show, depicted the Republicans shooting themselves, specifically the Republican-controlled House, and subsequently asking, “Why is [Hakeem] Jeffries the speaker?”

Scalise soon dropped out of the race without taking a vote to the floor.

In a meme shared on Oct. 13, after Jordan was voted the new Republican nominee, Collins poked fun at the predicament. The post said, “Marked safe from having a speaker today,” referencing the recognizable template used by Facebook for users to let friends know they are safe following a disaster.

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), the next GOP nominee, failed his first speaker ballot on Tuesday, losing 20 Republican supporters, which was more than his team had expected.

In response, Collins seemed to suggest himself as a speaker. “Speaker Collins is the only way out,” a post to X said.

In a second failed vote for Jordan, he saw 22 Republicans vote against him — more than on the first ballot.

Afterward came a Collins meme.

“Say the line,” a photo Collins posted to X said following the ballot. “A speaker is not elected,” the photo continued.

As to what inspired his meme storm, he said, “It’s more like a Southern thing.”

“It’s just a way to break some of the drama, as you put it, and I just give a little levity and a little humor to things just to lighten the mood just a little bit,” he explained.

“Things are still serious, and don’t get me wrong, this is serious business. But you can still take a moment,” Collins added.

Despite the silly nature of the meme posts, he said he is hopeful they can make some difference among the Republican conference: “I think what it does in large part — and I have people coming up to me all the time, just saying, ‘Hey, thank you. We needed that. I enjoyed that. And that was crazy.'”

He added, “It helps, and we’re glad it does because one thing’s for certain: We need to have a speaker, and we need to get back to work.”

During a third vote on Friday for a speaker, Jordan once again failed to meet the threshold of necessary votes to become speaker, with 25 Republicans defecting. In a conference meeting following the ballot, Jordan stepped aside as the nominee, making room for a new member to try his or her luck.


Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who was ousted when Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) forced a vote on a motion to vacate earlier this month, reportedly didn’t answer when asked if he would run for speaker again after the conference meeting.

The House will adjourn for the weekend, and Republicans will reconvene on Monday for a speaker candidate forum after failing to elect the first two nominees.

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