Live updates: House reconvenes in last-ditch effort to select speaker before week ends

  • In Politics
  • 2023-01-06 14:02:02Z

WASHINGTON-Two years after the U.S. Capitol was stormed by a violent mob of former President Donald Trump's supporters, the House GOP is in turmoil as Republicans struggle to elect a House speaker.

Meanwhile, the legacy of the Jan. 6, 2021, attack, will be marked Friday in remembrances by President Joe Biden and others.

Latest developments:

  • House speaker election drags on: A group of Republican defectors led by the ultra-conservative House Freedom Caucus have stymied the election of a House speaker by refusing to vote for the party's House leader, Rep. Kevin McCarthy. He lost an 11th vote for the speaker role Thursday night.

  • House GOP agenda on hold until speaker chosen: After two years of Democratic control in both chambers, allowing for an 18-month congressional investigation into the Capitol attack, the GOP has vowed to fight back on narratives around the Jan. 6, 2021, attack, COVID-19 and Joe Biden's son, Hunter Biden. But without a speaker of the House, the party remains in political purgatory.

  • House to honor January 6 anniversary: Before the House reconvenes Friday, Democrats and Republicans will remember the Jan. 6 anniversary in press conferences to honor those mpacted by the violent attack two years ago.

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Violent protesters, loyal to President Donald Trump, storm the U.
Violent protesters, loyal to President Donald Trump, storm the U.  

House speakership still undecided

As the first week of the 118th Congress comes to a close, a House speaker has not yet been selected.

Though House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy has consistently won a majority of Republican votes, some 20 conservatives refuse to cast votes in his favor, preferring candidates like Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., or Rep. Kevin Hern, R-Okla. Without those votes, McCarthy is short of the votes needed to win the powerful position.

Democrats have remained united around leader Hakeem Jeffries, all 212 voting in his favor in all 10 votes.

The situation has left Congress stymied, since no member of the House of Representatives can be sworn in and no rules can be adopted until someone is selected for the role.

- Ella Lee

What to expect on Day 4

When the House gavels in at noon Friday, it will become evident if Thursday negotiations were fruitful for House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy who has lost 11 consecutive votes for speaker.

Lawmakers and political analysts in both parties discussed last night the possibility of a deal that could appease 20 rebels in his right flank and whether at least 16 of them would be swayed to McCarthy's side.

On the fourth day of a new Congress without a speaker and sworn-in members, all eyes will be on the competing GOP factions of McCarthy and his 200 allies and his 20 detractors led by Reps. Matt Gaetz, Chip Roy, Scott Perry and Andy Biggs.

The math allows McCarthy to lose four of the 20 in his bid for speaker. But after days of a cumbersome process, any movement to his side would be seen as a huge momentum shift for the caucus leader.

It's possible a historic 12th vote could begin at noon, or some members could push for an adjournment until Monday, leaving Congress without a House speaker or sworn-in representatives for the weekend. McCarthy is not in favor of adjourning for the weekend and has said the House shouldn't leave if its work isn't done.

"Progress" has been the magic word all week, with both McCarthy allies and opponents telling reporters an agreement was near.

Friday could prove them right or wrong.

-- Candy Woodall

House to honor Jan. 6 anniversary

Before the House reconvenes Friday, Democrats and Republicans will remember the Jan. 6 anniversary in press conferences to honor those who were killed, injured and impacted by the violent attack two years ago.

At 9:30 a.m. on the House Triangle, Democratic Reps. Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey and Dean Phillips of Minnesota will mark the anniversary and highlight the recently passed Electoral Count Reform Act they say "will help preserve the integrity of our elections and protect democracy."

At 10 a.m. on the House steps, Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries will hold a bipartisan remembrance with Republicans, recognizing two years since the attack.

Many House members serving today were there on Jan. 6, 2021, when a violent mob stormed the Capitol.

-- Candy Woodall


This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Live updates: Kevin McCarthy again tries to secure House speaker role


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