House votes Kevin McCarthy out of speaker’s office

By Bob Unruh

Joe Biden greets House Speaker Kevin McCarthy as he arrives to deliver his State of the Union address, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2023, on the House floor of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. (Official White House photo by Adam Schultz)
Joe Biden greets House Speaker Kevin McCarthy as he arrives to deliver his State of the Union address, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2023, on the House floor of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. (Official White House photo by Adam Schultz)

The U.S. House has, for the first time in its 200-year-plus history, removed the speaker from his office.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., was voted out on Tuesday as the result of a rebellion among House GOP members who wanted to adopt a more conservative, and more aggressive posture.

The vote, 216-210, came on a handful of GOP members upset with McCarthy’s leadership and all Democrats.

Fox News reported the movement was led by Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., who brought forward a plan called motion to vacate. He accused McCarthy of breaking promises he made to win the speaker’s gavel in January

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Fox reported, “Tensions flared during an hour of debate before the actual motion to vacate, after 11 Republicans voted with every Democrat to advance the measure. McCarthy’s allies had taken up all of the microphones on the GOP side of the chamber, forcing Gaetz to make his case from the side where Democrats traditionally sit.

Gaetz charged that McCarthy is “chaos” and the result now in the House is that members will have to vote on a new leader before other business can move forward again.

Democrats indicated they had no desire to help McCarthy, who took over as speaker following dozens of votes when the GOP became the majority last winter.

Fox confirmed, “McCarthy angered hardliners over the weekend when he passed a short-term spending bill known as a continuing resolution (CR) to keep the government open for 45 days, in order to avert a government shutdown and give lawmakers more time to cobble together 12 individual spending bills.”

Conservatives wanted limits on Biden’s frantic spending plans, his decision to dump billions of dollars into Ukraine, and a closure of the southern border. Also they targeted the massive social agenda programming that Biden is doing throughout the government.

Republicans control the chamber by a narrow 221-212 majority, meaning it took only a handful of defections to remove McCarthy. Now members will have to come together on a new name.

Critics accused McCarthy of not pushing hard enough to cut spending, which has exploded under Joe Biden.

One interesting point: The Constitution does not require the House speaker to be a member of the House, and at the last election, there were some who suggested President Donald Trump for the role.

Another name suggested has been Majority Leader Steve Scalise.

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