The opposition Republican Party plunged into a crisis as its Speaker Kevin McCarthy lost the gavel after a small group of its Congressmen joined hands with the Democratic Party in an unprecedented vote in the House of Representatives.
Eight Republicans led by Congressman Matt Gaetz voted against McCarthy along with the Democrats in a 216 to 210 votes on Tuesday afternoon.
Congressman Patrick McHenry was declared Speaker pro tempore as the two parties chalk out their future course of action.
This is the first time since 1910 that a House voted on whether to remove a sitting Speaker.
The reason Kevin McCarthy went down today is because nobody trusts Kevin McCarthy. Kevin McCarthy has made multiple contradictory promises. And when they all came due, he lost votes from people who maybe don’t even ideologically agree with me on everything, Gaetz told reporters soon after the vote.
Gaetz and his team were upset that McCarthy entered into a deal with the Democrats to prevent a government shutdown.
On September 30, the House of Representatives voted to pass a continuing resolution with the support of more Democrats than Republicans which was quickly passed by the Senate and signed by the President. The new deadline to fund the government is November 17.
Today’s vote to remove Kevin McCarthy as Speaker of the House is an unprecedented action that showcases the dysfunction and infighting within the House Republican Caucus, Indian American Congressman from the Democratic Party Ami Bera said.
As Members of Congress, we have been entrusted with the responsibility to do what is best for the American people through bipartisanship and compromise, he said.
However, instead of working on critical issues facing our country, including a delayed government shutdown, extreme Republicans in Congress have taken historic steps that could bring the People’s House to a screeching halt. This is a reckless and irresponsible use of both time and government resources while there is serious work to do for the American people, he said.
Indian American Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi said, GOP extremists just voted to oust Kevin McCarthy as Speaker.
The Washington Post and The New York Times reported that McCarthy had told his associates that he would not run for the post of House Speaker again.
His removal underscored the bitter Republican divisions that have festered all year and capped an epic power struggle between Mr McCarthy and members of a far-right faction who tried to block his ascent to the speakership in January, The New York Times said.
They have tormented him ever since, trying to thwart his efforts to keep the nation from defaulting on its debt and ultimately rebelling over his decision over the weekend to turn to Democrats for help to keep the government open, the daily said.
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