Image: J. Scott Applewhite, AP

A long-shot effort to deny John Boehner a third term as speaker gained traction before Tuesday’s House vote as two Republicans jumped into the race against the Ohio leader and at least nine GOP lawmakers said they would vote for an alternative candidate.

The brewing rebellion is unlikely to succeed — at least 29 Republicans would have to vote against Boehner to strip him of the gavel. That would force the leadership election to a second ballot.

Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., made a splash over the weekend when he said he would not support Boehner and accused his neighboring congressman of being an “undemocratic” and “irresponsible” leader.

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