Rep. Bill Flores (R-Texas) on Monday said he intends to run for House speaker, but would step aside if Paul Ryan decides to enter the race.
In an email circulated to some of his fellow House Republicans, Flores informed colleagues of his plans while stating he would withdraw for Ryan (R-Wisc.). Ryan has said he doesn’t want the post, but many in his party are calling for him to reconsider.
Flores made the same announcement Monday morning to a Texas Oil And Gas Association meeting in Las Colinas, according to two sources in the room.
In his email, Flores asked his colleagues formally for their support. He touted his business background and emphasized that he was seeking feedback on the race and the speakership as a whole.
Flores did not immediately respond to The Texas Tribune’s request to comment on his candidacy.
The political world is holding its breath as Ryan, the GOP’s 2012 vice presidential nominee, reluctantly considers Republican entreaties to run. While he has expressed little interest in serving in the position in this moment of Republican turmoil, he is generally considered the lone Republican who can unite the fractious House GOP conference.
If Ryan doesn’t run and Flores does, the Texas congressman’s biggest strength is that he chairs the largest voting bloc of conservatives, the Republican Study Committee.
The Texas Tribune first reported last week that Flores was giving a run serious thought.
He is not the only Texan in contention. Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas) has said he will consider running for speaker if Ryan opts against a run and Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) is also mulling a run, a source close to him confirmed.