MADRID, 7 (.)
The Republican leader Kevin McCarthy has been elected this Saturday morning as Speaker of the House of Representatives after having obtained the majority support of the Republicans in the fifteenth ballot.
The congressman from California has obtained 216 votes, two less than the majority established at 218, which, however, have been enough after six congressmen have voted “present”, abstaining from casting a vote and thus reducing the total number of votes needed to reach the majority.
The election of the new president of the United States House of Representatives took place minutes after McCarthy did not get the Presidency in the fourteenth ballot, since he had fallen just one vote away from the majority.
In fact, the penultimate vote has given rise to a confrontation between McCarthy and the Republican congressman Matt Gaetz, whose vote would have been essential for the Republican leader to have been proclaimed as speaker of the House of Representatives in the fourteenth ballot.
Several members of the Republican Party crowded around Gaetz after he made it known that he would not support McCarthy in that vote, sparking an intense argument in which Congressman Mike Rogers has angrily lunged at Gaetz only to be separated by his peers.
However, minutes later the majority of the congressmen have refused to postpone the fifteenth vote until Monday at noon, as Gaetz had proposed, leading the Lower House to vote consecutively on what has been the last scrutiny.
This last vote has counted on the favorable vote of Gaetz and the abstention of the vote of six other Republican congressmen, lowering the necessary number of supports to 214.
The four days of voting have paralyzed the activity of the House of Representatives and generated a legislative crisis unprecedented in more than 150 years, all this after differences have flourished between various factions of the Republican Party.
With very little margin for error, McCarthy, who aspired to assert the small Republican majority in the House of Representatives given the 222 seats the party won in the midterm elections, has only been able to win after 15 votes.
“THAT WAS EASY, HUH?”
After weeks of negotiations and days of deadlock, Kevin McCarthy has taken the podium of the House of Representatives to give his first speech as Speaker of the US House of Representatives.
“That has been easy, huh? I thought I would never get here”, the Republican leader began to inaugurate his Presidency after fifteen votes.
“My father once told me: It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish. And now we have to finish strong for the American people,” McCarthy said.
Likewise, he has stressed that, as president of the House of Representatives, he will answer to the Americans and not to his party, reaching out to the leader of the Democratic minority in the House, Hakeem Jeffries, to reach agreements when necessary.
In this sense, he has highlighted some of his priorities as president of the House of Representatives, among which his desire for the United States to win economic competition against China stands out.
BIDEN AND TRUMP CONGRATULATE MCCARTHY
The president of the United States, Joe Biden, has congratulated the new speaker of the House of Representatives and has affirmed that the American people expect their leaders to govern “in a way that puts their needs above all else.”
“As I said after the midterm elections, I am prepared to work with Republicans when I can, and the voters have made it clear that they expect Republicans to be prepared to work with me as well. Now that the leadership of the House of Representatives has been decided , it is time for that process to begin,” the US president recalled in a statement released by the White House.
“It is imperative that we continue that economic progress, not stop it. It is imperative that we protect Social Security and Medicare, not cut them. It is imperative that we defend our national security, not defund it. These are some of the options we have before us,” Biden stressed.
For his part, former President Donald Trump has congratulated McCarthy and the “great Republican Party” after the proclamation of the Republican leader at the head of the Presidency of the Lower House.
“The ‘Speaker’ selection process, crazy as it sounds, has made it so much bigger and more important than if it were done in the more conventional way. Congratulations to Kevin McCarthy and our great Republican Party!” Trump has written on his Truth Social platform, according to CNN.
The former president’s post comes after Trump made some last-minute calls to several congressmen in attendance after it appeared McCarthy was not going to win the presidency until after the weekend.