McCarthy Decries’ Embarrassing’ Speaker Chaos
The House of Representatives continues to find itself in a leadership deadlock that Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has deemed “embarrassing” for the nation and the Republican Party. As the House enters its third week without a leader, the former Speaker weighed in on the repeated failed effort to elect a new person for the position during an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
Rep. Kevin McCarthy said the repeated failed effort to elect a new Speaker of the House is "embarrassing" for the U.S. and the Republican Party as the House enters its third week without a leader. https://t.co/CA0Dx5KhcJ
— Axios (@axios) October 22, 2023
Failed attempts to elect a new Speaker of the House, including bids from Reps. Steve Scalise (R-LA) and Jim Jordan (R-OH), have left House Republicans in a state of disarray. The impasse has now led to the emergence of a third round of potential candidates, some of whom lean towards the hard-right of the party and have, at times, voted alongside Democrats.
A total of nine candidates have thrown their hats into the ring, among whom is the current House Majority Whip, Tom Emmer (R-MN).
Looking at the situation, McCarthy expressed his disappointment, stating, “I would have hoped that everyone would come together, put the country before politics, and actually solve this.”
For the ousted Speaker, this leadership vacuum is not only an embarrassment for the party but for the entire nation, as he emphasized that both Jordan and Scalise had the potential to serve as Speaker and lamented that the chaos continues to persist.
McCarthy also pointed a finger at Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and seven other Republicans, attributing the House’s current predicament to their actions. However, he defended his decision to push a vote to keep the government open, asserting that it was the right course of action to prevent a government shutdown and ensure the troops’ well-being.
In his words, “Eight Republicans led by Gaetz have created this chaos by joining every single Democrat in voting to shut down one branch of government. Look, I would do the exact same thing again. Could you imagine if we were having this discussion rate now with the American government shutdown, with our troops in the Middle East wondering when they’ll ever get paid again? Keeping the government open was the right decision to make, and I’d make it again each and every day.”
When questioned about the possibility of re-entering the Speaker race, McCarthy made it clear that he doesn’t need the title. Instead, he pledged his support for Tom Emmer while emphasizing his commitment to lead in any capacity to protect America.
Meanwhile, former Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) has said McCarthy himself is to be held accountable for the turmoil within the House. Speaking on CBS’ Face the Nation, she pointed to his elevation of members who sought to overturn the 2020 election results and his reluctance to address the events of Jan. 6.
“You know, what we’ve seen is a result of really, the leadership decisions that Kevin McCarthy made all the way back after the 2020 election and certainly after January 6, then, you know, looking the other way in the face of the kind of assault on our democracy that we’ve seen from [former President Trump] and his allies in the House, including [Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio)],” she stated.