The U.S. House of Representatives made history on Tuesday as dissident Republicans joined forces with Democrats to remove Kevin McCarthy as Speaker. This unprecedented move followed nine months of political turbulence and 15 rounds of voting.

Introduction

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The historic vote resulted in a 216-210 decision on a motion to vacate, filed by Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz. The House now enters uncharted territory as it has never before removed a sitting Speaker. North Carolina Rep. Patrick McHenry has assumed the role of speaker pro tem until a new speaker is elected.

The Vote and Uncertainty

A small group of House Republicans, including Andy Biggs, Ken Buck, Tim Burchett, Eli Crane, Matt Gaetz, Bob Good, Nancy Mace, and Matt Rosendale, voted in favor of removing McCarthy. Their dissent had been growing for months.

Dissent Among House Republicans

Kevin McCarthy, while expecting his ousting, expressed concern about the consequences of such a move, emphasizing the need for a stable Congress. He defended his decisions, including his support for a bipartisan short-term spending bill to prevent a government shutdown.

McCarthy's Response

Matt Gaetz and other hard-line conservatives criticized McCarthy for not adhering to a private deal made in January. They questioned his commitment to a vote on legislation for additional aid to Ukraine and accused him of adding border security to those talks.

Gaetz and Conservative Critique

House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries announced that House Democrats supported the motion to vacate, citing concerns about McCarthy's alignment with MAGA extremism. Democrats believe that McCarthy has repeatedly broken trust with them.

Democratic Support for Removal

Some House Republicans, including Tom Cole, Steve Womack, and Stephanie Bice, defended McCarthy's actions, emphasizing the importance of avoiding a government shutdown and focusing on essential legislative work.

Republican Supporters of McCarthy