The US House of Representatives has appointed a new speaker following 15 separate votes, with GOP Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy now set to fill the position after a days-long battle with insurgent Republicans.
While McCarthy lost out on the 14th vote on Friday night and the House appeared to be headed into the weekend without a speaker, Republicans pressed for yet another ballot in a last-minute decision. After gaining the support of more than a dozen fellow GOP members who had voted for other candidates, the California lawmaker finally secured a majority vote in the early hours of Saturday morning.
Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida was the sole GOP member standing in McCarthy’s way before the final vote, leading a group of 20 insurgent Republicans under the pro-Trump Freedom Caucus during this week’s speaker votes. The lawmakers argued that McCarthy is too willing to capitulate to Democrats and represents years of bad policy-making, obstructing him from taking the speaker position for four days of balloting.