The US House of Representatives will have to vote for a new president after an unprecedented vote ousted Republican Kevin McCarthy.
The United States House of Representatives has removed its speaker, a Republican, for the first time in the body’s 234-year history.
Democrats teamed up with right-wing Republicans on Tuesday to oust Republican Kevin McCarthy as House speaker, an unprecedented move in American political history that comes amid a bitter divide within the Republican Party.
Here’s a look at what’s coming next:
Will there be an acting speaker after McCarthy’s impeachment?
- Immediately after Tuesday’s 216-210 vote, Republican Rep. Patrick McHenry, a McCarthy ally, was temporarily named acting chairman. He can only hold office for a very limited time: up to three legislative days in this case.
- The temporary duties of the acting speaker are vague, according to a guide to House rules and procedures: That person “may exercise such authorities of the office of speaker as are necessary and appropriate pending the election of a speaker or president pro tempore.” .
- While the president sets the overall legislative agenda in the House of Representatives, it is the House majority leader who schedules specific bills for debate and voting in the chamber.
- Republican Rep. Kelly Armstrong told reporters that McHenry’s main task will be to “get us a new speaker.” Anything further, she said, would lead to McHenry’s removal from office.
Will there be a funding freeze?
- The vote to impeach McCarthy came just days after the House narrowly avoided a government shutdown. McCarthy’s ouster will increase current uncertainty around government spending, including billions of dollars in aid for Ukraine and other international needs.
- Until a House speaker is installed, further action on bills to fund the government is unlikely as lawmakers face a Nov. 17 deadline to provide more money or face a shutdown. partial of the government.
- Battles over those bills and anger over McCarthy’s failure to deliver extremely deep spending cuts requested by far-right conservatives prompted Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz’s successful move to unseat McCarthy.
- The House’s 221 Republicans and 212 Democrats met privately to determine their next steps (both political and legislative) after McCarthy’s impeachment.
- Each party was expected to try to elect a candidate for the new speaker of the House. That’s easy enough for Democrats, as they solidly back Democratic Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, who ran for president in January against McCarthy and other candidates.
Republicans, you can join us and vote for Hakeem Jeffries for Speaker of the House.
—Ayanna Pressley (@AyannaPressley) October 3, 2023
- Republicans, because of their obvious divisions, especially among the small group of hardline conservatives who led McCarthy’s overthrow and are seeking very deep cuts in federal spending, may have a harder time deciding on a candidate.
- McHenry might have an advantage now that he is the interim speaker. It was unclear if he wants the job. McCarthy is not prohibited from running again, but he said he would not do so.
- The House is in an unprecedented time and therefore it was unclear exactly how quickly the election of the press spokesperson would take place. Typically, elections for president are scheduled at the start of the new Congress every two years.
When will the vote be held to elect a new president?
- Leaders of both parties will have to decide when they are ready to enter the process of electing a president.
- The January vote in which McCarthy was finally elected could not get enough votes to win and had to endure 15 ballots.
- The vote could be at least as chaotic this time for Republicans, unless they conclude that that chaos is creating a public backlash that could ruin their electoral prospects in 2024 and unite.
Who can apply for speaker?
- Under the United States Constitution, the Speaker of the House does not have to be a member of Congress. That’s why some Republicans have mentioned former President Donald Trump’s name for the job, even though he is running for president and has said he doesn’t want the job.
- “I don’t know who’s running,” McCarthy told reporters at a Capitol news conference Tuesday night.
- When asked who he thought should replace him, McCarthy said a candidate who puts “the country first.”