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January 05, 2023 12:10 PM UTC

McCarthy Fails on Ballot #11; Congress Inches Toward Record

  • by: Colorado Pols

UPDATE #10: McCarthy failed yet again in an 11th round of voting. House members then agreed to recess until Noon EST on Friday.


UPDATE #9: Kevin McCarthy finished the 10th round of voting in pretty much the same position as he started. Republicans are talking about trying to recess until Tuesday, though Democrats are pushing back (as they should). Every day of this debacle is another lost day where the Legislative Branch of the government isn’t functioning.


UPDATE #8: Make it an even 10!

Arizona Republican Rep-Elect Juan Ciscomani nominates Kevin McCarthy for House Speaker. For the 10th time.

This is now the longest Speaker’s race since 1859.


UPDATE #7: Nine rounds of voting have now concluded. Still no Speaker.



UPDATE #6: Round 9? Round 9.



UPDATE #5: Kevin McCarthy loses the eighth round.


UPDATE #4: In the eighth vote, currently underway, Rep. Lauren Boebert switches her vote to Rep. Kevin Hern of Oklahoma–briefly sparking a stir when the name “Kevin” was heard before it was realized she wasn’t talking about that Kevin.


UPDATE #3: Always keen to milk a little extra press out of the spectacle, Rep. Matt “Giggity” Gaetz of Florida switches his vote to Donald Trump for the speakership.


UPDATE #2: Rep. Lauren Boebert votes for Rep. Byron Donalds in the seventh vote, which appears on track for a seventh failure for Kevin McCarthy. Rep. Ken Buck despite his contradictory statements votes for McCarthy one more time.


UPDATE: Freshman Rep-elect John James of Michigan nominates Kevin McCarthy for Speaker to kick off Vote #7. North Carolina Republican Rep-elect Dan Bishop then rises to nominate Florida Republican Byron Donalds as Speaker (again) before promptly accusing Republicans of being racist for not supporting Donalds.

Things are going great for the GOP.


Watch the train wreck in live slow motion (that’s the speed of live), and stand by for updates:



62 thoughts on “McCarthy Fails on Ballot #11; Congress Inches Toward Record

  1. I have a solution! Elect Boebert as speaker. The crazies will truly be running the house so make it official. And she is so stupid, it’ll insure that nothing happens.

    imagine what a train wreck that would be.

    1. I want to believe there are at least twelve sane Republicans who would vote present and elect Hakim before they’d let someone with a GED and a gun on her hip take the gavel. 

    1. If this goes into tomorrow, the J6 anniversary, and it’s the day MyKevin goes down in flames, some level of poetic justice will be served. 

    1. Finally!

      Given all the sycophants and lunatics running amok in that asylum, it's baffling The Chosen One wasn't nominated on day one??

  2. Now that MyKevin has given the wingnuts everything they’ve asked for and yet they still won’t vote for him, it seems either

    A) MyKevin is a slow learner — they’ll never vote for him

    B) The seventh vote was a deal where the wingnuts get to show everyone who’s really in charge, but will before the end of the day, switch their votes to MyKevin

    C) This farce will continue until MyKevin endorses Scalise or someone similar (as long as the same package of concessions to the wingnuts stays in place) issuing some face-saving statement about achieving his goals.

    1. Some of the Screwball Caucus allegedly have issues with Scalise and everyone else in prior leadership roles.

      Maybe someone should track down that speech he gave speaking kindly towards David Duke supporters. That might win them over.

    1. I saw an interview last night with a Congressman-elect who said it was unclear whether they’d be paid for this week, adding, “we may have to go fight for back pay”. 

      1. Elected will get paid, staff won't after 15th of month. Can you imagine any of these wingnuts write bills when they can't even speak in complete english sentences? 

    2. "The giant question – are the rep-elects willing to give up their standard 3 day weekend and continue this on into tomorrow?"

      Of course not. Why would they do that? Fundraising for 2024 must go on!

  3. "In the eighth vote, currently underway, Rep. Lauren Boebert switches her vote to Rep. Kevin Hern of Oklahoma–briefly sparking a stir when the name “Kevin” was heard before it was realized she wasn’t talking about that Kevin."

    Such a tease!

    It might make sense for the Screwball Caucus to nominate Trump next round and dare My Kevin's 202 (loyal? for now) supporters to vote against Orange Jesus. Even though he is not running, you know Trump will take great umbrage to anyone voting against him.

    Stay the course, Representative McCarthy. Some day they will thank you!

    1. Today has a serious #WhiteLotus vibe. Can we expect some poo to be smeared on the walls of the House tomorrow to commemorate J6? BoBo packing her heat on the House floor? Gaetz donning a chemical mask? 

    1. The opposite of "It's not horrible" is not necessary "It's good." I wouldn't say this clown show is good but it's not horrible. You're right that it's better than cable news sound-bite screaming matches and it's far better than January 6, but it's not good.

      This is the most productive thing Republicans can do and it's not horrible.

  4. Time to get serious.  For the next round of balloting, I think some true-bluered Republican should nominate Ronald Reagan!?

    OK, sure, he may be a little bit dead, but not that much more so than MyKevin.

  5. McCarthy wasn’t lucky with the House’s third time voting. 

    McCarthy wasn’t lucky with the House’s third time doing a third time voting.

    Do you suppose we’ll need to wait until the CUBE of 3 for McCarthy to find some luck?

  6. On Update #9 // "Every day of this debacle is another lost day where the Legislative Branch of the government isn’t functioning."


    Even if they elected someone as Speaker, swore everyone in, passed the rules, assigned people to committees …. the Legislative Branch of the government will not be functioning.

  7. All joking aside, I am finding this drama over the speakership to be just the latest installment of a decaying political system. Both sides (D & R) have become so hyper-partisan that they cannot work together to override what the majority of both parties view as merely 20 extremists.

    In times gone by, the GOP leader and the Dem leader would have gotten together and had a conversation something like:

    Dem leader: There are a handful of committees where your party has more than a seat or two majority. Let us have an additional seat on those committees and we'll give you the votes you need to become Speaker and let the country's busy continue.

    GOP leader: deal.

    It is really that simple. But we can't get there from the extreme "us & them" mentality we have ensconced ourselves in.

    And this mentality is not only just between parties but within both of them. The centrists of each party can't seem to work out common ground with even the fringes of their own party, let along with those across the aisle.

    I have been saying for quite some time that this extreme partisanship would be the death of our Republic. It is the reason I finally gave up and left political parties, because the rhetoric was so combative, I saw no way either side can move forward.

    I still don't.

    1. If 6 Republicans presented themselves at Jeffries' seat and offered this in written rules terms with an escape if not honored clause, Dems would probably take it. But the only offer we seem to have gotten is the "let Kevin do what he wants or he'll negotiate with the terrorists" deal.

      One of the Republicans' hard rules over the past 20ish years is that when they control the House, only Republican votes matter; it's called the Boehner Rule. Why should Democrats be looking to perpetuate being stomped on?

      1. To be the adults in the room? Nothing is going to improve the Dems' position over the next 2 years….but they can lay the ground work to taker back the House in 2024 on the campaign "the GOP is not fit to rule"

        1. but they can lay the ground work to taker back the House in 2024 on the campaign "the GOP is not fit to rule"

          I would argue that they're doing that right now. 

        2. I'm tired of being the adults in the room only to have Republicans shout "Gotcha nerds!" and do whatever they want to spite Democrats and push things that are not only pro-Republican but are adamantly anti-Democrat.

          If Republicans want help from Democrats electing a Speaker, they need to put on their grown-up pants and come ask us then Democrats should say "No" unless the request is to make a moderate Democrat the Speaker.


    2. In a hyperpartisan atmosphere, having a committee minority by one or a minority by two wouldn't make a bunch of difference.  It is still a minority, and it would still lose any important votes.

      In the current situation, Kevin McCarthy is already thought to be too cooperative with Democrats by the 20 voting against him, and if he tried to strike a deal to offset those 20, I suspect he would lose MANY more.  The concessions he already made matched the initial asks, but when he agreed, the goalposts shifted and he's being asked for more.

      the things the Democrats want are things Kevin has already committed to NOT do.

      I don't think ANYONE voting for someone other than Kevin would trust Kevin to be able to deliver on whatever he promises.

      Here's hoping those with influence on the Representatives can lean on enough of them to pop out of the prepared positions and actually bargain.


        1. If everyone votes, there are 444 … majority would be 218.

          Democrats have 212 consistently.  To get to a majority, 6 Republicans would need to vote for Jeffries or 12 would need to not vote or vote "Present" rather than a name.  From the outside, it doesn't seem like TOO big a lift to find 6 Republicans willing to put a functional government over their own likely political demise two years from now or 12 willing to take that slightly lesser risk. 

          Maybe seeing that Adam Kinzinger just landed on his feet with a gig at CNN as "Senior Political Commentator" will inspire a bit of confidence. Or that 2 of the 10 who voted to impeach Trump won their primary & general elections, and are back as members- elect.



          1. 1) the total at the moment is 434 (there's one vacancy)

            2) I think it is unreasonable to ask the GOP to give up the speakership when they have the majority, except as a punitive measure I have described previously in another post.

            3) I think it is a lot less of an ask to get a handful of Dems to vote for the GOP leader as a means of putting down the Rabid Dog Caucus. Especially if they can use it to get a few more committee seats.

            1. Respectfully, McCarthy *is* in the mad dog camp – he's just not as mad as the 20 in opposition to him. McCarthy was involved in ousting Boehner years ago; he may look spineless, but he's not interested in a coalition. If Democrats vote for him, they're just doing the Charlie Brown / Lucy football thing.

    1. Good job on Rep. Neguse on reminding everyone about the past few embarrassing episodes if dysfunction on behalf of the MAGAT's and yahoos, and who is called in to be the adults after that happens. I'm sure all of the Trump humpers would like to forget about these things forever – don't let them.

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