House Adjourns Until 10pm Friday Following Two More Failed Speaker Votes

January 6, 2023

At roughly 3:20pm Rep.-elect Steve Scalise (R-LA) moved that the House stand adjourned until 10pm. When Democrats tried to out shout the Republicans with their no votes, Scalise called for an electronic tally. By a vote of 220 to 212, the House adjourned.

McCarthy and his Republican allies were likely going to use the hours between the adjournment and 10pm to negotiate further with the remaining Republican holdouts—and hopefully to allow two absent McCarthy supporters, Reps.-elect Ken Buck (R-CO) and Wesley Hunt (R-TX), time to return to Washington to add their votes to McCarthy’s tally.

Following negotiations with the far-right holdouts Thursday night, McCarthy was able to pick off 14 resisters during two rounds of voting Friday afternoon, bringing his vote total up to 214 and for the first time surpassing that of Rep.-elect Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) who has enjoyed the consistent unanimous support of House Democrats. 

Agreeing to concessions which would give more power to the far-right Freedom Caucus while decreasing the power of the Speakership, McCarthy’s deal has reportedly angered some mainstream Republicans, who have grown frustrated with the the far-right holdouts and believe the concessions being offered could make it harder for the new GOP majority to effectively govern, though they will likely hold their noses and accept them.

The House had gone to a 13th round of voting for Speaker on Friday—the fifth longest in U.S. history.

The Constitution requires that the House elect a Speaker, and the vote takes priority over all other business. No other House business can begin until the Speakership is resolved.

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