U.S.

House adjourns without speaker elected after McCarthy fails to win in three rounds of voting


Republicans walked out of their conference at 9:30 a.m., with both parties sticking to their positions just before the new Congress convenes. McCarthy told reporters afterward that the meeting was “tense” but that he would not be held hostage by the Freedom Caucus and said he was prepared for a fight in the hall.

“There are times when we’re going to have to argue with our own members if they want to — just about positions for ourselves, not for the country,” McCarthy said. He added that Republicans have been working for the past two months to develop rules that empower all members of Congress, “but we don’t empower certain members over others.”

He also said of the far-right Freedom Caucus’ proposal: “I will always fight to put the American people first, not a few individuals who want something for themselves. So we might have a fight on the floor. But the battle is for the conference in the country and that’s good.”

Goetz echoed his opposition, saying, “Everything I’ve heard has hardened my resolve that this city is in desperate need of change. And if a few of us have to stand in the breach to force it, we’re willing to do it for as long as it takes.”

McCarthy told reporters before heading into the chamber that he was “not going anywhere” when asked if he would stay in the race. “We really had an intense conference, and it’s intense with a purpose,” McCarthy said. — We worked for a long time.

McCarthy said he was given an opportunity last night to get to 218 by a group of Republicans “if I get certain members with certain positions, certain gavels to take certain committees to have certain budgets.”

“Well, this is not about America, and I will always fight to put the American people first, not a few individuals who want something for themselves,” McCarthy said. “We might have a fight on the floor. But the fight is for the conference and the country and that’s fine with me.”

Rebecca Kaplan, John Nolen


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