Representative Kevin McCarthy was ousted from his role as Speaker of the House on Tuesday afternoon. Americans are asking, now what?
Note: Some quotes in this piece have been lightly edited for grammar.
Representative Kevin McCarthy will go down in history as the first House speaker to lose his role. Though motions to vacate have been made throughout America’s past, this is the first to succeed.
Representative Matt Gaetz filed the motion to overthrow House Speaker McCarthy late Monday evening after claiming the speaker failed to take a strong stance on issues important to voters.
So Be It
Representative McCarthy quickly pointed out that he had stopped a government shutdown. He publicly said that if that cost him the role of Speaker, it was worth it.
Many Republicans showed their support for Rep. Gaetz online. As one poster said,” I’m very proud of Matt Gaetz for doing what he did today. There needed to be accountability for Kevin McCarthy‘s ineptness.”
But others were quick to point out that getting rid of McCarthy could lead to issues. “I’ve been a bit on the fence on this one,” one person said. “I’d thought McCarthy was soft, but I think we need to come together.”
Congress in Chaos
Ousting the Speaker leaves the House of Representatives in uncharted territory. Though they have elected a temporary Speaker, he’s only been given “necessary” powers, and it’s unclear how long he will remain at the helm.
If The Past Is Any Indication
Given that it took 15 rounds of voting to elect McCarthy, many are wondering what the immediate future of the House looks like. “It’s the million dollar question,” one poster said. “What I can guarantee is the coming weeks will be very eventful.”
Trouble For Republicans
Many believe the move could lead to major issues for Republicans. One user predicted, “This divide will cost them the 2024 election.”
Change Is Good
Others were encouraged by the action, stating that the move signaled positive changes within the party. “McCarthy has been a divisive figure in the Republican Party, and his removal as Speaker is a sign that the party is finally moving on from his brand of politics,” said one poster.
A few pointed out that Democrats stood together during the vote. There had been questions about whether Dems would step in to save the Speaker as moderate Republicans hoped they would.
In the end, though, Democrats chose not to help Rep. McCarthy out. During a two-hour caucus meeting on Tuesday morning, Democrats were encouraged to vote against McCarthy, and they followed suit.
A few Americans said that while this move showed a fracture in the Republican party, the Democratic party was already split. They predicted a loss for both parties and a win for Independents in 2024.
That’s unlikely to happen, though. While third-party candidates have changed election outcomes, they don’t win presidential elections outright.
Man Without a Plan
Republicans are left with a split party and no plan. “What a terrible, awful thing for Republicans to do,” one user said. “The Republicans have no plan; Gaetz has divided the party heading into one of the biggest election cycles in this country’s history.”
Even if it creates chaos for Congress, many citizens felt this move aligned with what voters want. “He [Rep. Gaetz] did the will of the people,” one user argued, and many echoed the sentiment.
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