What an extraordinary night. One Republican politician limits another. The would-be speaker confronts the man who just stopped him.
A former president is being called into the chamber.It’s all caught on camera inside the house of representatives.
Last-minute deals, angry faces, rallies of rebels, all captured like a modern old master.
It’s all happening as politicians gather for their 14th vote in four days to choose the Speaker – second in line to the US presidency.
Republican leader Kevin McCarthy thinks he’s got it in his pocket this time around.
He has conceded so much to a small group of ultra-conservative Republicans who have blocked him for days.
He promised them lucrative, high-impact committee positions and promised to change the rules governing his stability. That, and he wanted their vote.
His concessions have attracted mostly Trump-style vandals.
But then shock. Maverick and controversial conservative Matt Gaetz wasn’t in it.
Mr. Gates did not vote for him despite effusively referring to Mr. McCarthy as the “speaker-elect” a few hours earlier on Fox News and saying he had “nothing left to offer McCarthy.” Always longed to be in the limelight?
Mr. McCarthy lost. He stepped forward to confront Mr. Gates. They look very angry. Then from behind, another MP approaches. Republican Mike Rogers had a few words for Mr Gates before being stopped by another.
Cameras caught it all.
this is today republican party. As it turns out, January 6 marks the anniversary of the uprising some of them instigated.
A few yards away, another politician—conspiracy theorist, QAnon supporter and Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Green—was pulling out her phone, which was active. On screen, the abbreviation DT.
Donald Trump – still manipulating behind the scenes, or doing his best. His team said he was calling several politicians in the Senate, including Mr. Gates.
His divisive politics made possible this fringe group of ultra-conservatives who are now sabotaging themselves.
For four days, Mr McCarthy caved in to their fringe demands. They can call the shots because the Republican majority is so small.
It looks like it’s all over for Mr McCarthy, at least for this week.
But the person who just voted against suddenly changed his mind.
Mr. Gates and Mr. McCarthy shook hands. Deal done, democratic compromise? Or desperate Republican infighting, which would leave Mr McCarthy in a straitjacket as Speaker, the weakest Speaker in years, unable to govern and beholden to his own far right.
Kevin McCarthy is said to have always wanted the job.
His fans say he’s a true conservative. Not tough, but steady and fair. His critics say he has always put power and politics before democracy and the American people.
Maybe, the truth is, he’ll be what those who let him cross the line want him to be. He is their man now.