Duh … My brain must have shorted out for me not to realize why people are saying Keffer has 87 votes for speaker: Because the vote on sustaining the ruling of the chair last Monday was 50 ayes, 87 nays.

Well, you guys can believe that was a surrogate vote for speaker if you want to. I was on the floor, and my view was that confusion reigned. Republicans didn’t know how to vote. Some people were urging Craddick to tell the House to vote not to sustain. Some made speeches telling the House to vote to sustain. It was chaos out there.

For the record, here is the vote on the motion. A yea vote sustains Craddick’s ruling, a nay vote does not sustain. This tally is cut and pasted straight from the House Journal.

Yeas: Anderson; Berman; Branch; Brown, B.; Brown, F.; Callegari; Chisum; Christian; Corte; Crabb; Creighton; Darby; Delisi; Driver; Dutton; Eissler; Flynn; Goolsby; Guillen; Hancock; Harless; Harper-Brown; Hartnett; Hilderbran; Hill; Howard, C.; Isett; Jackson; King, P.; King, S.; Kolkhorst; Laubenberg; Macias; Madden; Morrison; Murphy; O’Day; Parker; Patrick; Paxton; Peña; Phillips; Riddle; Smith, W.; Smithee; Swinford; Taylor; Woolley; Zedler; Zerwas.

Nays: Allen; Alonzo; Anchia; Bohac; Bolton; Bonnen; Burnam; Castro; Cohen; Coleman; Cook, B.; Cook, R.; Davis, J.; Davis, Y.; Deshotel; Dukes; Dunnam; Eiland; Elkins; England; Escobar; Farabee; Farias; Farrar; Frost; Gallego; Garcia; Gattis; Geren; Gonzales; Gonzalez Toureilles; Haggerty; Hamilton; Hardcastle; Heflin; Hernandez; Herrero; Hochberg; Hodge; Homer; Hopson; Howard, D.; Jones; Keffer; Krusee; Kuempel; Latham; Leibowitz; Lucio; Mallory Caraway; Martinez; Martinez Fischer; McCall; McClendon; McReynolds; Menendez; Merritt; Miles; Naishtat; Noriega; Oliveira; Olivo; Orr; Ortiz; Otto; Pickett; Pierson; Pitts; Puente; Quintanilla; Raymond; Ritter; Rodriguez; Rose; Smith, T.; Solomons; Strama; Straus; Talton; Thompson; Truitt; Van Arsdale; Vaught; Veasey; Villarreal; Vo; West.

Present, not voting: Mr. Speaker; Turner(C).

Absent, Excused: Chavez; Moreno; Mowery.

Absent: Aycock; Bailey; Crownover; Flores; Giddings; Hughes; King, T.; Miller.

The list raises some obvious questions. Are the Craddick Ds looking for a safe landing? Are the Republican defections one-time or permanent? I’m not sure that the perpetrators themselves know the answers yet. The situation is very unstable. I don’t think that the members thought they were voting for speaker at the time–but this may be the result in retrospect.