Sorting by


Right-wing Republican Matt Gaetz files bid to oust House Speaker Kevin McCarthy

A hard-right Republican from Florida has launched an extraordinary bid to oust US House of Representatives Speaker Kevin McCarthy amid tensions over a funding extension that avoided a partial government shutdown at the weekend.

Republican Representative Matt Gaetz, who has clashed with MrMcCarthy for months, introduced a “motion to vacate” that would force a vote to remove Mr McCarthy as speaker, though he has not floated an alternative leader for the chamber.

“I have enough Republicans where at this point next week, one of two things will happen: Kevin McCarthy won’t be the speaker of the House or he’ll be the speaker of the House working at the pleasure of the Democrats,” Mr Gaetz told reporters after he filed the motion. “I’m at peace with either result because the American people deserve to know who governs them,” he said.

Mr McCarthy responded minutes later on social media, saying: “Bring it on.”

It is not clear whether Mr Gaetz’s motion will succeed. Republicans control the chamber by a narrow 221-212 majority, and it would take as few as five defections to threaten McCarthy’s hold on power, if all Democrats vote against him.

Mr Gaetz and other right wing Republicans are angered that Mr McCarthy relied on Democratic votes to pass a temporary funding extension on Saturday that headed off a partial government shutdown.

They are also angered that he abandoned a May spending agreement with Democratic President Joe Biden, as well as his approval of an impeachment inquiry into the president.

Mr Gaetz has for months threatened to a motion to vacate to try to strip Mr McCarthy of his office.

In a speech on the House floor earlier in the day, Mr Gaetz accused Mr McCarthy of making a deal with the White House during funding negotiations to bring forward legislation to help fund Ukraine in its war against Russia.

Brushing off the threat, Mr McCarthy told reporters earlier at the Capitol, “I’m focused on doing the work that has to be done.” He added that there was “no side deal” on Ukraine, noting he has not spoken to Mr Biden.

A motion to vacate is a rare and strong procedural tool that has only been used twice in the past century against Republican speakers. But in recent years, conservatives have wielded the motion as a weapon against their leaders.

Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button