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U.S. House votes to remove Kevin McCarthy as speaker

Patrick McHenry of North Carolina is set to oversee the House until a new leader is chosen.

U.S. House votes to remove Kevin McCarthy as speaker


WASHINGTON — Dissident Republicans in the U.S. House, in an unprecedented move, joined forces with Democrats on Tuesday to remove Kevin McCarthy as speaker. This historic development occurred a mere nine months after McCarthy took the gavel following extensive negotiations with the GOP's right flank and 15 rounds of voting.


The U.S. House of Representatives saw a motion to vacate initiated by Republican Representative Matt Gaetz, who has been a vocal critic of McCarthy since he assumed the leadership position.


Gaetz stated before the vote, "In instances where he failed to take a principled stance, I felt compelled to act. I unapologetically defend the right of hardworking Americans to attain a decent life for themselves and their families. I believe we have a better opportunity to achieve this under new leadership."


Gaetz's frustrations reached a peak when McCarthy, with Democratic support, passed a resolution to keep the government operational this past Saturday.


Immediately following the successful vote to remove McCarthy, North Carolina's Patrick McHenry was designated speaker pro tempore, assuming the role until the election of the new Speaker.


In a post-ouster press conference on Tuesday, McCarthy announced, "I will not seek the speakership again. I will leave the decision to select a new leader up to the conference."


He reflected on his willingness to take risks and cited his recent gamble for the American public. McCarthy referred to the bill that the House passed to avert a government shutdown for the next 45 days, acknowledging the uncertainty surrounding its passage. Despite opposition and delays from Democrats, McCarthy underscored his commitment to serving the American people.


McCarthy's decision not to seek re-election introduces uncertainty regarding the long-term future of the speakership, as there is currently no evident successor for his position.


The removal of McCarthy represents a historic moment in U.S. political history, marking the first instance of a House speaker being removed through this procedure. In a notable historical parallel, Speaker Joseph Cannon survived an attempt to oust him in 1910.


The timing of the next election for a House speaker remains unclear, considering that it took 15 votes for McCarthy to secure the speakership earlier in the year.


Democrats have observed the intra-party strife within the Republican ranks, and while they had the option to support McCarthy to retain his role, Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries stated before the vote that his party felt no obligation to come to his aid.


SEE MORE: Rep. Matt Gaetz initiates a move to depose House SpeakerKevin McCarthy.


"President Biden has shown a consistent willingness to collaborate with both Congressional parties in a spirit of goodwill for the benefit of the American populace," stated White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Tuesday. "Given the pressing issues confronting our nation, he anticipates a swift election of a new Speaker in the House. It is imperative that leadership prioritizes the concerns that directly impact the lives of our citizens."


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