McCarthy Finally Wins Speakership On 15 Ballot
House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.) on Friday night finally became Speaker after a brutal 15 rounds of voting after a chaotic scene erupted on the House floor.
The victory came after GOP lawmakers made a last-minute move and stopped the motion to adjourn to vote on the speakership one more time following a conversation between McCarthy and Gaetz.
Rep. Matt Gaetz voted “present” in the 15th round of voting for House speakership.
Gaetz also voted present in the 14th round after initially walking out the chamber when his name was first called.
The final tally was 216 votes for McCarthy and 212 for Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries. In addition, there were six “present” votes.
McCarthy failed to secure enough support during a 14th round of voting despite earlier optimism among his allies.
After the vote, an extraordinary scene erupted as McCarthy confronted Gaetz, whose vote could have given him the speakership in the 14th ballot.
The longest fight for the gavel started in late 1855 and dragged on for two months, with 133 ballots, during debates over slavery in the run-up to the Civil War.
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