McCarthy Loses Speaker Vote For 4th & 5th Times Despite Trump Pleas


Well, things aren’t looking great for the guy well-known for what seems like his willingness to adhere himself to whatever he might think best suits him politically.

Kevin McCarthy, the House GOP leader, lost a fourth vote for House Speaker on Wednesday, even after former President Donald Trump posted an endorsement of his bid for the post on Truth Social, his alternative social media platform. There were still about a dozen and a half — approaching two dozen — Republicans voting against McCarthy, although on Wednesday, they coalesced instead behind Byron Donalds, a Republican Congressman from Florida. (On Tuesday, Jim Jordan received much of the opposition support among Republicans.) Kevin would need a majority across the House as a whole, not just among the GOP, so the thin, incoming Republican majority means just a small group of the party can keep McCarthy from securing the Speaker role. Reporter Jake Sherman tallied McCarthy already losing enough support by “E” in the alphabetical listing of voting members to face defeat on the fifth ballot as well.

Those leading the Republican push against McCarthy include Matt Gaetz and Lauren Boebert, and they sound quite committed. “When I said it couldn’t be business as usual in DC, I meant it,” Boebert said early Wednesday as turmoil continued. “I didn’t win my election to fight for the swamp. I’m fighting for the good of the American people.” Gaetz also explicitly pushed back against Trump after the former president promoted McCarthy’s Speaker bid. “Supporting McCarthy is the worst Human Resources decision President Trump has ever made. Sad!” the Florida Congressman tweeted on Wednesday. If Boebert, Gaetz, and others are this willing to go against Trump on something so high-profile, would they get behind a DeSantis candidacy for president if the Republican governor decided to actually join the field?

The House is procedurally paralyzed until the chamber settles on a Speaker, and President Joe Biden himself was among those weighing in on the situation, telling reporters it was “embarrassing.” “How do you think this looks to the rest of the world?” Biden added on Wednesday. “We’re finally coming out of — the first time we’re really getting through the whole history relating to January 6, things are settling out, and now for the first time in 100 years, we can’t move… This is not a good look. It’s not a good thing. This is the United States of America, and I hope they get their act together.”

Photo via Gage Skidmore, available under a Creative Commons License