After the second day of deliberating for House Speaker, 20 Republicans supported Rep. Byron Donalds, depriving House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of the position of House Speaker after the sixth vote.
Donalds Gaining Support
Rep. Chip Roy proposed Donalds once the House reconvened on Wednesday at midday.
Roy said to an around of applause that this happens to be the very first time in American history, two African-Americans have now been nominated for the position of speaker. He was also alluding to Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, the Democrat candidate (D-NY).
The candidacy of Republican Byron Donalds for speaker by Rep. Chip Roy was received with rapturous applause. Hakeem Jeffries, a Democrat, was also put forward.
"For the first time in history, there have been two black Americans placed into the nomination for Speaker."
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) January 4, 2023
Donalds supported McCarthy on the initial two ballots earlier this week, but on the third ballot, he accompanied the GOP dissenters and voted for Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH).
Wednesday’s first ballot resulted in 201 votes cast for McCarthy, with 212 votes for Jeffries, and 20 votes cast in support of Donalds. Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-IN) just voted as being present.
The vote comes following former President Donald Trump urged Republican House members on early Wednesday morning to back McCarthy as leader.
Trump wrote on Truth Social that it is now essential for each of the outstanding Republican House members to cast their vote in favor of McCarthy, to seal the deal and secure the victory.
He went on to urge his fellow Republicans to not turn a great victory into an embarrassing defeat. He said they deserve to celebrate something and that time is now. He expressed his support for McCarthy by saying that McCarthy will likely do a very good job.
On Tuesday, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) delivered an address in which he renominated McCarthy for the job and urged Republicans to come together for the vote.
He addressed Republicans by saying that to his friends on that side of the aisle, he would just like to say their disagreements pale in contrast to those between the right and the left.
— CSPAN (@cspan) January 4, 2023
Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-IN) decided to cast a “present” vote during the 118th Congress.
218 votes are required for a candidate to win the gavel of speaker; however, this number can be reduced if members vote “present,” refuse to vote, or are away.
McCarthy Faces Resistance
Voting will proceed for whatever number of days is necessary to pick a speaker. Members of the House cannot be inaugurated in until a speaker is selected, delaying legislative action and committee assignments for the 118th Congress.
McCarthy has made compromises to attract GOP hardliners, notably making it simpler to dismiss the current House Speaker. However, other members, such as Reps. Dan Bishop (NC), Matt Gaetz (FL), and Lauren Boebert (CO), remain unconvinced.