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Ray Bogan

Political Correspondent

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Politics

McCarthy: Some demanded House committee positions for Speaker vote

Jan 03, 2023

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Ray Bogan

Political Correspondent

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The House of Representatives failed to elect a Speaker during its initial vote Tuesday. This is the first time since 1923 that the House did not select a leader on the first ballot. 

The final count was 203 for Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., 212 for Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., 10 for Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz. and 9 for others. All 212 Democrats voted for Jeffries while all 19 defections from McCarthy were Republicans.

With Republicans holding a majority in the House, Rep. McCarthy has been campaigning for the top job in the chamber. But members of the House Freedom Caucus refuse to vote for him. Caucus members tried to get McCarthy to appoint them to powerful committee positions in exchange for their vote. 

“Last night I was presented the only way to have 218 votes if I provided certain members with certain positions, certain gavels to take over a committee, to have certain budgets,” Rep. McCarthy said. “And it even came to a position where one Matt Gaetz said I don’t care if we go to a plurality and we elect Hakeem Jeffries and it hurts the new front line members not to get re-elected.” 

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-GA, said there has been fierce debate about writing House rules and the party platform but appeared to indicate some members of her party went too far when they tried using committee positions as a negotiating tool. 

“I find out that it’s my Freedom Caucus colleagues and my supposed friends that went and did that and they asked nothing for me. Nothing. That’s what I found out in there, I am furious,” Rep. Greene said.  

Representatives will now move to a second ballot, and they will continue voting until a Speaker candidate receives 218 votes. By law, the House of Representatives is not allowed to do anything until it elects a speaker, including swearing in members.

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The House of Representatives failed to elect a Speaker during its initial vote Tuesday. This is the first time since 1923 that the House did not select a leader on the first ballot. 

 

The final count was 203 for Republican Kevin McCarthy, 212 for Democrat Hakeem Jeffries, 10 for Republican Andy Biggs and 9 for others. All 212 Democrats voted for Jeffries while all 19 defections from McCarthy were Republicans. 

 

With Republicans in control, Congressman Kevin McCarthy has been campaigning for the top job in the chamber. But he is being held back by members of the House Freedom Caucus who refuse to vote for him. In fact it was revealed they tried to get him to appoint them to powerful committee positions, in exchange for their vote. 

Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif: “Last night I was presented the only way to have 218 votes if I provided certain members with certain positions, certain gavels to take over a committee have certain budgets. And it even came to a position where one Matt Gaetz said I don’t care if we go to a plurality and we elect Hakeem Jeffries and it hurts the new front line members not to get re-elected. “

 

Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene said there has been fierce debate about writing House rules, and the party platform, but appeared to indicate some members of her party went too far in asking for committee positions in exchange for their vote. 

 

 

Marjorie Taylor Greene: I find out that it’s my freedom caucus colleagues and my supposed friends that went and did that and they asked nothing for me. That’s what I found out in there, I am furious. 

 

Representatives will now move to a second ballot, and they will continue voting until someone gets 218. By law, the House of Representatives is not allowed to do anything until they elect a speaker, that includes swearing in members. Straight from DC, I’m Ray Bogan.