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McCarthy elected US Speaker at 15th attempt after tensions boil over in Congress

After winning the 15th vote, Republican Kevin McCarthy was elected the US Speaker. This comes amid tensions in Congress.

After the fall midterm elections, Mr McCarthy’s party took control of the House, the lower US chamber. It had a slim 222-212 majority.

The Speaker is usually elected as a formality. The leader of the largest party is a strong candidate for the job.

Recent splits in the Republican Partymeant this did not occur until the 15th round.


On the 14th ballot, McCarthy received 216 votes. This is one less than the required number to win. However, a small group of right-wing extremists remained strong.

On the 15th ballot, he won by a margin 216-211.

Image: Rep. Kevin McCarthy smiles after winning US Speaker vote

He was elected with less than half of the House members’ votes because five members of his party withheld their votes. They did not vote for McCarthy, but they also didn’t support him as leader.

More information about the Republican Party

He told his cheering supporters, “My father always said to me, it wasn’t how you start, but how you finish.”

US President Joe Biden congratulated Joe on his success, and stated that he was “prepared to work alongside Republicans” whenever he can.

The Republican party is now expected to take on President Obama and the Democrats with McCarthy promising subpoenas as well as investigations.

McCarthy stated, “Now comes the hard work,”

‘Stay civil’

After four days of voting, which lasted into the 14th round of ballots, there was a heated exchange. Rep. Matt Gaetz did not vote for McCarthy and McCarthy was seen moving to the back of the chamber.

Mr Gaetz was one the six Republican holdouts and he was voted “present” in both the 14th round and the 15th.

This basically meant that he registered his presence in the House to vote but didn’t support any candidate for Speaker.

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“An utterly exceptional few hours”

After McCarthy approached McCarthy, there was a hostile back and forth. Meanwhile, a few Republican legislators began to crowd McCarthy’s office.

Rep. Mike Rogers, who voted for Mr McCarthy, seemed to move in the direction Mr Gaetz was sitting but was stopped by other members.

Someone shouted, “Stay civil!”

Continue reading: Anger, confrontation and Donald Trump – an unforgettable night in US politics

Another Mr McCarthy supporter, Rep. Richard Hudson was seen also grabbing Mr Rogers around his mouth. However, it was not clear what the argument was about.

In another instance, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene was seen waving a cellphone around while making a call to a person called ‘DT’. This implied that it was Donald Trump.

The GOP member from Georgia shared the image via Twitter and wrote, “It was the perfect telephone call.”

Although many rebel Republicans were supporters of Donald Trump, Mr Trump had supported Mr McCarthy repeatedly for Speaker.

McCarthy’s generous concessions

A few far-right Republicans from the conservative Freedom caucus felt that McCarthy wasn’t conservative enough to be appointed, despite his acceptance of many of the demands of his detractors.

McCarthy has agreed to the reinstatement of a House rule that allowed any member of the House to call a vote to remove him from office. This was one of the most difficult requests.

Image House of Representatives members get physical as Rep. Andy Harris pushes Rep. Mike Rogers back.

This will severely limit his power to pass legislation that addresses critical issues such as funding the government and addressing the nation’s debt ceiling.

The Speaker is one the most powerful positions within US politics. This week’s failed ballots marked the highest number for the speakership since 1859, two year before the American Civil War.

The sessions to choose the right person for the job lasted hours in the chamber, with one session lasting eight hours.

What is the US Speaker doing?

The position of Speaker of the House is one the most powerful in US politics.

They manage the day-to-day business of the House of Representatives and establish the order of the House.

A Speaker’s position can either make or break the agenda of a US President or, if they are from the same party, hinder opposition to their policies.

The Speaker is elected from the party with the largest House majority. This can make it a help or hinderance to the US President.

Previously, Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, held the position. The position will be changed after the Republicans lost the House in recent midterm elections.

Republicans have pledged to make the investigation into US President Joe Biden’s business dealings and family members a top priority since they won control of the House.

A White House statement in December accused the House Republicans of plotting to attack Biden with politically motivated attacks that were full of long-debunked conspiracies.


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