Patterico's Pontifications

1/3/2023

GOP Will Vote For Speaker of the House Today (UPDATE)

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:18 am



[guest post by Dana]

Today is the day Kevin McCarthy finds out whether he is going to be the next speaker of the House. So far, there is a lot of drama behind the scenes as the GOP remains split over McCarthy, and he continues to struggle to secure enough votes:

House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy and his top supporters erupted at the dozen-plus conservative hardliners vowing to block his speaker bid in a closed-door meeting Tuesday, just hours before the vote.

In a fiery speech to his conference, McCarthy underscored the extensive concessions he has made to those who have vowed to oppose him, largely those in the House Freedom Caucus, according to multiple members in the room.

But he also told members that there are about 20 members who plan to vote against him, far more than the five who have publicly opposed him — underscoring the likely chaos that awaits the GOP as they seek to elect a speaker at noon.

I earned this job. We earned this majority, and God dammit we are going to win it today,” McCarthy said to a standing ovation, according to lawmakers in the room.

Likely Steve Scalise will be a candidate for the job if McCarthy fails to secure 218 votes. Currently, however, Scalise is supporting McCarthy’s bid for the job.

Anyway, let’s hear from a few Republican women expressing their frustration over the GOP’s family squabble:

P.S. While the House has now convened for a vote, what happensabout if things go awry:

If McCarthy doesn’t get the votes on the first ballot, there is the option to make a motion to adjourn, but it would take 218 votes to do that and Democrats are not likely inclined to help Republicans out in any way.

There is no playbook for what the chamber will do if the speaker isn’t elected on the first ballot. The 1923 vote was decided on the ninth ballot, where they kept voting until a speaker was decided. The 1869 speaker vote lasted through 60 ballots over the course of two months.

This Congress may recess the chamber, or they could continue voting.

But no other House business can be done until this vote is finished, including swearing in of the rest of the members. Until the speaker’s vote is decided, the clerk of the House is in charge of the chamber.

Keep you posted.

UPDATE: The House has adjourned after three ballots and still no speaker. The GOP continues to be fractured and unable to function as a cohesive body. For his part, after the second vote, McCarthy said he is in it to win:

“Remember how they all said they have this secret candidate? Their secret candidate nominated me, so where do they go now?” McCarthy said, referring to [Jim] Jordan. “This can’t be about that, you’re going to leverage somebody for your own personal gain.”

“I’m staying until we win,” McCarthy added. “It will eventually change.”

Stay tuned…

–Dana


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