Washington — House Speaker Kevin McCarthy was ousted from his leadership position in a historic vote on Tuesday after a far-right revolt over his reliance on Democrats to pass funding to avert a government shutdown.
The final vote was 216-210, with eight Republicans joining all the Democrats to vote to remove McCarthy. It’s the first time a House speaker has been removed in a no-confidence vote.
“The office of Speaker of the House of the United House of Representatives is hereby declared vacant,” said Rep. Steve Womack, who was serving as presiding officer.
Rep. Patrick McHenry of North Carolina, a top ally of McCarthy’s and a member of the Financial Services Committee, was then appointed speaker pro tempore. The rules of the 118th Congress state that “in the case of a vacancy in the office of speaker, the next member” named on a list submitted by McCarthy to the clerk of the House in January will become speaker pro tempore until a speaker is elected.
“The one thing that the White House, House Democrats and many of us on the conservative side of the Republican caucus would argue is the thing we have in common — Kevin McCarthy said something to all of us at one point or another that he didn’t really mean and never intended to live up to,” Gaetz said on the House floor Tuesday ahead of the vote.