After 14 votes, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA.) finally acquired the votes needed to grasp the Speaker’s gavel in a historic victory acquired just after midnight.
In the early hours of Saturday (January 7), McCarthy won the Speakership on the 15th vote, overcoming four days of chaos on the House floor to attain a much-needed victory.
After the win, McCarthy told his cheering Republican colleagues about a message his father relayed to him, saying, “My father always told me, it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.”
McCarthy, eluding to the Republicans’ eagerness to tackle President Joe Biden and the Democrats, promised that the GOP would be cracking the whip with subpoenas and investigations, asserting that the” hard work begins.”
The California Republican also thanked former President Donald Trump for his assistance in getting the final votes.
Following McCarthy taking the oath of Office, lawmakers were able to be sworn in after they had waited nearly a week for the 2023/2024 session to commence.
McCarthy’s win wasn’t without some last-minute upsets. The California Republican managed to flip more than the dozen votes he needed to acquire the Speakership but was still one short in the fourteenth vote, leading to a commotion in the lower chamber.
After Gaetz and a handful of other Republicans, including Rep. Lauren Boebert (Colo.) decided to hold out their votes, McCarthy stormed to the back of the House, where he confronted the Florida Republican.
The commotion would have nearly turned violent if it wasn’t for Rep. Richard Hudson’s (N.C.) intervention.
Republican Rep. Mike Rogers (Alabama) stormed over to Gaetz while shouting before Hudson reminded him to “remain civil,” averting what many believe would have been a brawl.