Donalds urges GOP to ‘recess and rally’ after opposing McCarthy on third ballot
Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., said House Republicans should regroup after he broke with McCarthy during the next speaker vote.
“The reality is that Rep. Kevin McCarthy doesn’t have the votes,” Donalds tweeted after opposing McCarthy in favor of Jordan.
“This will take time, democracy is messy at times, but we will be ready to govern on behalf of the American people. Debate is healthy.”
Donalds added that he had publicly pledged his support for McCarthy, “and by two votes on the Floor of the House”, noting that neither candidate had gotten the votes needed to claim the job.
“Our conference needs to take a break and meet and find someone or work on next steps, but these rolling votes don’t work for anyone. When the dust settles, we will have a Republican president, now is the time for our conference to debate and reach a consensus,” Donalds wrote.
The GOP House majority is one of the smallest in modern history.
Why is the speaker vote so tight? It’s a matter of math: The Republican majority in the House is too small for McCarthy to afford more than a handful of defections. In fact, this Republican majority is one of the smallest in the last century.
Republicans have a nine-seat margin in the House. According to data from the Office of the Historian of the House of Representatives, in the last 100 years there have been only four other sessions of Congress with a majority margin of 10 seats or less: the 72nd Congress (1931-33), the 83rd Congress (1953 -54), the 107th Congress (2001-2002) and the recently concluded 117th Congress (2021-2022).
Third ballot over, no speaker elected
With the full vote on the third ballot, 202 voted for McCarthy as speaker, 212 voted for Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, DN.Y., and 20 voted for Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio.
Anti-McCarthy Conservatives seen huddled in the chamber during the third ballot
During the third ballot for president, several House Republicans who have opposed McCarthy being president were seen huddled in the back of the chamber.
The conservatives huddled in the center aisle were Reps. Matt Gaetz of Florida, Scott Perry of Pennsylvania, Chip Roy of Texas and Lauren Boebert of Colorado.
McCarthy about to fail for the third time
A fourth ballot was expected Tuesday afternoon as McCarthy appeared to be on the brink of falling short of the votes needed to take the presidency for a third time on Tuesday.
McCarthy lost twice that same day, with 19 conservatives voting for Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio in the second round.
McCarthy’s conservative colleagues continued to defiantly vote for Jordan on the third ballot, and Democrats again supported Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York.
McCarthy was nominated for the third time by Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, who has been seen as a potential challenger for the job. Rep. Chip Roy of Texas nominated Jordan.
After twice voting for McCarthy, Republican congressman moves to Jordan
Rep. Byron Donalds, a Florida Republican, switched his vote for the McCarthy speaker to Rep. Jim Jordan, a Republican from Ohio, on the third ballot.
Donalds voted for McCarthy during the first two ballots. Donalds represents Florida’s 19th Congressional District and has served in the House since 2021.
There was a handful of applause on the chamber when Donalds voted for Jordan.
Democrats mock Republicans for inability to pick House speaker
Now in the minority, House Democrats appeared to enjoy Republican divisions over the choice of a speaker Tuesday.
Representative Bill Pascrell, DN.J., tweeted, “Update: After two rounds of voting, Republicans still can’t pick a leader on their first day in power.” He then posted a gif of the 1937 Hindenburg disaster, showing an aircraft crashing to the ground.
“I might post videos of cute kittens while we wait for the @HouseGOP to get their act together. What do you think?” tweeted Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Fla., while Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., tweeted a picture of Gunther Gebel-Williams saying he was the world’s best animal trainer for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus: “Who Kevin McCarthy needs to emulate. Little chance. Tigers are easier to organize than conference! republican!” he said.
In other cheep, Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., mocked both McCarthy and incoming Rep. George Santos, RN.Y., who recently admitted to lying about his background. Connolly wrote: “George Santos on the Speaker’s career: ‘Kevin McCarthy stood by me in Normandy, and I’ll stand by him today.'”
Democratic lawmaker jokes that his daughter can ‘step in’ as a speaker
Rep. Josh Harder, D-Calif., joked that his daughter could “step in” to serve as House speaker in a tweet as Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California lost his second vote for the office on Tuesday.
The comment came as the lawmakers showed up with their families to be sworn in before the 118th Congress on Tuesday.
“Lillian has agreed to step in as Speaker,” Harder said. wrote. “But only if it comes with a lifetime supply of raspberries.”
Pelosi reacts to the fight of the Republicans to choose the president of the Republican Party
As House Republicans scrambled to elect their own president now that they have a majority, former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., suggested the GOP is ruining Congress as an institution.
“For many of us here who have served in Congress, we respect the institution, and it would have been my hope that out of respect for the institution, the other side could have resolved their differences because they have the majority. And really, the public impression of this is not that respectful of the institution,” Pelosi told reporters as lawmakers spent hours trying to pick the speaker.
Asked what Pelosi would recommend to her Republican counterparts, she said: “It’s up to them.”
Pelosi stepped down as Democratic leader after twice serving as Speaker of the House. She has decided, however, to remain a rank and file member of Congress.
Speaker’s vote moves to multiple rounds for first time in 100 years
On Tuesday, a group of ultra-conservative rebels twice prevented House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy from winning the speaker’s gavel in the first votes of the new Republican majority, marking the first time the House has held multiple votes for elect a speaker in 100 years.
In the dramatic televised vote on the House floor, McCarthy of California received overwhelming support from his Republican Conference, with 203 votes, but that was fewer than the 218 needed to win a simple majority of the 434 members. of the House present. McCarthy lost a second round of voting by the same amount.
Nineteen conservatives cast their votes for other candidates in the first round, with the majority backing one of McCarthy’s main antagonists, former Freedom Caucus chair Andy Biggs, R-Ariz. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, received six votes, while Rep. Jim Banks, R-Indiana, former Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-New York, and Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., each received one vote. .
All 19 voted for Jordan in the second round.
Read the full story here.