USA. The House of Representatives has still not chosen a speaker. Kevin McCarthy is fighting for the Republican vote
The US House of Representatives, after thirteen ballots, still failed to elect a new speaker. The longest deadlock since 1856 is underway. However, the media signal that a compromise is getting closer. The candidate of the theoretically majority Republicans is Kevin McCarthy, who in the thirteenth round on Friday managed to win another congressman of his party to his side. Six GOP members still voted against him, CNN reported.
The impasse drags on for another day. The House of Representatives – which is dominated by Republicans – voted to adjourn again on Thursday after eleven votes and three days still failed to elect a new speaker. The adjournment was decided after the fourth ballot, in which House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy still did not get enough votes. Friday has not been resolved yet.
The thirteenth vote was inconclusive
In the thirteenth round of voting, Kevin McCarthy won the vote of Republican Congressman Andy Harris. Still, six of his party colleagues are against him, the portal of the American broadcaster CNN reported.
Kevin McCarthy won the votes of 214 congressmen. Hakeem Jeffries, the Democratic leader, was supported by 212 congressmen, while Jim Jordan, the Republican, was supported by 6 deputies.
After the thirteenth vote, the House of Representatives supported the motion for a recess, which is to last until 10 p.m. local time (4 in Poland).
McCarthy still needs the support of two of his party colleagues to get the required 216 votes. In the previous days’ voting, the required number of votes was 218. However, three congressmen left Friday’s session, the BBC explained.
CNN journalist and host Jake Tapper reported ahead of the thirteenth ballot that McCarthy’s election was blocked among Republicans by Andy Biggs, Lauren Boebert, Eli Crane, Matt Gaetz, Bob Good, Andy Harris and Matthew Rosendale. According to Tapper McCarthy, in order to become the announcer, he needs to get the votes of three people from this group.
According to CNN, McCarthy’s supporters believe that his biggest opponent among Republicans is Florida Representative Matt Gaetz. “Gaetz believed he could hold ten votes against McCarthy, and McCarthy’s team believes Gaetz will start losing control of them,” it said.
McCarthy negotiates with the extreme wing of the Republicans
The latest results were the first progress since Tuesday in the election of the Speaker of the House of Representatives amid a rebellion of a group of congressmen from the extreme wing of the Republican Party against the party’s leader.
This was possible thanks to McCarthy’s framework agreement with some of the “rebels”. According to reports from the Washington Post, among others, the politician agreed to make concessions to facilitate the process of recalling the speaker and reduce his powers, as well as to reduce budget expenditures. According to Bloomberg, the agreement includes a reduction in defense spending by $75 billion.
Deadlock in the House of Representatives
Thursday’s five ballots went in much the same way: Kevin McCarthy, the leader of the Republican majority since January, did not win enough of a majority (he received 201 votes), because 20 of his party colleagues from the extreme wing of the party voted for the alternative candidate, Florida’s Byron Donalds, Kevin Hern from Oklahoma, or Donald Trump. Each time, Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries won the most votes, winning the support of all 212 party colleagues.
The impasse that has been ongoing since Tuesday, which has prevented the House from working and the formal swearing-in of congressmen, is the first such situation since 1923. Then, it took three days and 9 votes to select the speaker – the third person in the country. The record in this regard was set in 1856, when the House needed two months and 133 votes.
Main photo source: PAP/EPA/JIM LO SCALZO
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