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Kevin McCarthy Elected US House Speaker After 15 Ballots

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Kevin McCarthy Elected US House Speaker After 15 Ballots

(CTN News) – Early on Saturday, Republican Kevin McCarthy was chosen to lead the House of Representatives after making significant concessions to right-wing extremists that raised concerns about the party’s capacity for leadership.

As midnight drew near, Representative Matt Gaetz delayed his vote on the 14th ballot, resulting in a fight that Republican Mike Rogers had to be forcibly hauled away from; the 57-year-old Californian experienced one more humiliation.

In more than 160 years, the worst legislative dysfunction ended with Kevin McCarthy’s win on the fifteenth vote. But it demonstrated his challenges in governing a small and strongly divided majority.

Finally, he prevailed by a score of 216-212. Six members of his party withheld their votes, not supporting Kevin McCarthy as a leader but also not voting for another candidate, which allowed him to win with the support of less than half of the House members.

Kevin McCarthy symbolized the end of President Joe Biden’s Democrats’ control of both houses of Congress when he first received the gavel.

“We have a system of checks and balances. We must act as a check on the president’s policies and provide some balance.

“McCarthy made this statement in his inaugural address, which outlined various aims, from reducing expenditure to addressing immigration issues to waging cultural wars.

Kevin McCarthy was only elected after giving in to hardliner demands that any legislator has the right to request his ouster at any moment.

That will significantly reduce his influence when attempting to enact legislation on important subjects like government spending, raising the nation’s impending debt ceiling, and other potential disasters.

Republicans had a slim 222-212 majority after the midterm elections in November, which gave the right-wingers who challenged McCarthy’s leadership an excessive amount of authority.

These concessions, which include significant spending cutbacks and other restraints on Kevin McCarthy’s authority, might portend further volatility in the coming months, particularly because Congress will have to approve an increase in the United States’ $31.4 trillion borrowing limit.

Republicans have attempted to force significant expenditure cutbacks over the last ten years by periodically shutting down huge portions of the government and bringing the biggest borrower in history dangerously close to default.

Hardliners have questioned Kevin McCarthy’s readiness to play such a dangerous cat-and-mouse game with Biden, whose Democrats control the Senate.

When Mitch McConnell’s Senate Republicans agreed to compromise agreements in the past, they raged.

The hardliners, who included Freedom Caucus Chairman Scott Perry of Pennsylvania and Chip Roy of Texas, said that concessions they got from McCarthy would make it simpler to use such measures or, if McCarthy does not live up to their expectations, force another vote on his leadership.

The way we’re going to spend and distribute money is going to shift historically, according to Perry.

“When the Democrats take over the White House and the Senate, we don’t want clean debt limits to simply pass and keep paying the bill without any counteracting effort to curb spending.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, one of those Democrats, warned that the concessions McCarthy made to “the extremists” in his party may come back to haunt him and increase the likelihood that the government shutdown or default will be brought on by the Republican-controlled House, both of which would have “devastating consequences.”

Biden and McConnell appeared together in Kentucky on Wednesday to push infrastructure projects, in stark contrast to the conflicts among House Republicans.

Kevin McCarthy’s tardy win occurred the day after the second anniversary of a violent mob invasion of Congress on January 6, 2021, to reverse the defeat of then-President Donald Trump.

The 14 unsuccessful votes this week were the most for the speakership since 1859, during the stormy years leading up to the Civil War.

McCarthy’s 2015 attempt to become a speaker failed in the face of the right-wing opposition.

John Boehner and Paul Ryan, the two former Republican speakers, resigned from their positions after disagreements with right-wing colleagues.

Kevin McCarthy now has the power to obstruct Biden’s legislative agenda, compel votes in favor of Republican goals for the economy, energy, and immigration, and advance inquiries into Biden, his family, and his administration.

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