(Daily Mail) Rep. Mike Johnson, the new Speaker, is one of the lower-profile lawmakers in Congress but has surged to victory and now holds the most powerful position in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The Louisiana Republican is a father-of-four who entered Congress in 2017 and is serving his fourth term.
Johnson, 51, is regarded as an intellectual, and a family man, and his success rescued the House from an ongoing state of chaos.
On Tuesday, he became his party’s fourth choice for House Speaker nominee in just three weeks after the historic ousting of Kevin McCarthy earlier this month.
So, as Johnson takes the gavel, who is the quiet bespectacled politician Republicans finally agreed on?
Rep. Mike Johnson is the new House Speaker. Here the Louisiana Republican is pictured with his wife Kelly and his four children from L: Hannah, Abigail, Will and Jack
From Shreveport, Louisiana, Rep. Johnson represents an area where he was born, raised and educated. Johnson was the eldest of four and the son of a firefighter
CHILDHOOD AND EDUCATION IN LOUISIANA
Rep. Johnson was born in Shreveport, Louisiana and still lives in that area in Bossier Parish. He represents Louisiana’s 4th congressional district, which includes Shreveport.
The oldest of four children, Johnson had two brothers Chris and Josh, and a sister, Laura.
His father James Patrick Johnson was a firefighter who was burned and disabled in the line of duty. He later went on to found the nonprofit Percy R. Johnson Burn Foundation, named after his partner and the city’s first black fire captain, who died in the same fire.
Johnson graduated from Captain Shreve High School.
He earned his undergraduate degree in business administration from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and later his Juris Doctor from the Louisiana State University Law Center.
Johnson’s congressional office described him to Dailymail.com as a ‘huge LSU fan as a double LSU alum.’
Mike Johnson married Kelly Lary in 1999. The couple have four children and reside in Bossier Parish with their two sons. Their daughters are attending college
DEVOTED HUSBAND AND FATHER TO FOUR
Rep. Johnson married Kelly Lary Johnson in 1999.
The couple, married 24 years now, have four children together – Hannah, 23, Abigail, 21, Jack, 18, and Will, 12.
Kelly Johnson is a former school teacher who now lectures on family-related issues and is a licensed Pastoral Counselor. She studied at Louisiana Tech University and graduated in 1995.
‘Kelly is also known by many for her personal testimony of deliverance through extraordinary trials, including her recovery from a broken neck in a 2007 car accident and other serious health challenges,’ Onward Christian Counseling Services notes in her biography.
The organization, which Kelly founded, aims to ‘provide confidential, biblically-based individual, marriage and family counseling to the people of Northwest Louisiana.’
The biography notes that Kelly is a ‘leader in the pro-family movement.’
Rep. Johnson and his wife have received many honors in the family and faith space, including the ‘Champions of the Faith’ award at the Southern Baptist Convention.
Kelly appeared on national television with her husband in 1999 to promote Louisiana’s newly passed marriage covenant laws, which made divorce more difficult in the state.
That moment helped Johnson to gain a higher profile.
Kelly (pictured with former First Lady Melania Trump) is a former teacher who founded Onward Christian Counseling Services to ‘provide confidential, biblically-based individual, marriage and family counseling to the people of Northwest Louisiana’
According to Mike and Kelly’s respective Facebook pages, their older son Jack rides bulls, plays and teaches guitar lessons, and was elected ‘governor’ of his class at Louisiana Boys State.
Their youngest Will plays baseball and likes to draw.
Both of the Johnson’s daughters are following in their father’s footsteps.
Their eldest child Hannah is in her second year of law school at Louisiana State University Law School and Kelly Johnson said their daughter Abigail is ‘on the way to law school’ and is in her senior year at Louisiana Tech this year.
Many images online show the family likes to go to the gun range together and hunt.
Johnson had a legal career before becoming a lawmaker – like many others in Congress.
He was a partner at Kitchens Law Firm and a senior attorney, doubling as the national media spokesman, for the Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative Christian legal advocacy group.
Johnson was also a chief counsel for the nonprofit law firm Freedom Guard.
When describing his legal career in September 2016, Johnson said he was focused on ‘defending religious freedom, the sanctity of human life, and biblical values, including the defense of traditional marriage, and other ideals like these when they’ve been under assault.’
From 2004 until 2012 Johnson served as a trustee pf the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.
Then, for one term, Johnson was a member of the Louisiana House of Representatives for the 8th district from 2015 to 2017.