US House of Representatives: the next vote postponed to Friday evening

The elected Californian has for the first time made significant progress in his candidacy, managing to convince some members of his camp to elect him as “speaker”.

For four days, his election has been blocked by a handful of Republicans loyal to former President Donald Trump who still oppose his nomination, although he has made several proposals to his opponents, including offering them greater influence on bills put to the vote.

These irreducible Freedom Caucus (Freedom Caucus, in French), a far-right parliamentary group, accuse him of being too moderate.

Republicans won a majority in the House of Representatives in midterm elections in November and have 222 of 435 seats.

Friday afternoon, at the end of the 13th round, Mr. McCarthy lacked two Republican votes to muster the 218 necessary to obtain the presidency of the House.

We’ll get those voteshe assured CNN before the postponement of the next round to Friday evening.

We will make progress, we will surprise youKevin McCarthy had promised when he entered the House of Representatives earlier in the day.

Republican lawmaker Kevin McCarthy answering questions from reporters in the House of Representatives

Photo : Associated Press / J. Scott Applewhite

An “extreme fringe”

This blockage has very concrete repercussions: without a President of the Chamber, elected officials cannot take the oath, nor therefore adopt any bill. But the 434 members of the House of Representatives, the scene of this singular spectacle, will continue to vote until a president is elected.

This is the first time in 100 years that the House has not agreed on the choice of its president in the first round. Nine rounds of voting were required in 1923.

An opportunity for the Democrats to denounce the stranglehold of the faithful of Mr. Trump – many of whom still refuse to recognize his defeat in 2020 – on the Republican Party, two years after the attack carried out by his supporters against the seat of Congress.

The chaos in the House of Representatives is just another illustration of how an extreme fringe […] prevents them from governingassured the leader of the Democrats in the Senate, Chuck Schumer.

Interior view of the US House of Representatives.

American elected officials in the House of Representatives for the election of a “speaker”.

Photo : Associated Press / Andrew Harnik

A member of the Republican staff for more than 10 years, the elected official does not currently have a credible competitor. Only the name of group leader Steve Scalise is circulating as another possible option, without his chances looking serious.

What is generally only a matter of a few hours could extend over several weeks: in 1856, the elected members of Congress agreed only after two months and 133 turns.

The annoyance was palpable in the members of the Grand Old Party, who largely support the candidacy of Kevin McCarthy, giving rise to very lively debates in the hemicycle. The Republican leadership also knows that it cannot afford to go overboard and alienate moderate Republicans.

In the Democratic ranks, where the elected officials all rise en bloc at each vote, as if to accentuate the Republican divisions a little more, we are busy as best we can. Joe Biden’s party may show unity around its leader Hakeem Jeffries, but neither does the camp have enough votes to end this paralysis.

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