Matt Gaetz seeks to oust Kevin McCarthy as House speaker
- Rep. Matt Gaetz introduced a motion to vacate against House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Monday.
- A motion to vacate allows a single lawmaker to force chamber-wide consideration of the speakership.
Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida on Monday introduced a motion to remove Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California as speaker of the House amid a broiling intraparty feud among congressional Republicans.
Gaetz made good on the repeated threats he and his fellow far-right colleagues have wielded against McCarthy, especially as the current speaker sought to avert a government shutdown over the weekend, eventually turning to a handful of Democratic lawmakers to help pass spending legislation that would keep the government funded.
"It is going to be difficult for my Republican friends to keep calling President Biden feeble while he continues to take Speaker McCarthy's lunch money," Gaetz said on Monday.
A motion to vacate allows a single lawmaker to force chamber-wide consideration of the speakership. Removal from the role requires a House majority. Congress hasn't moved to vote on vacating a speaker since 1910.
The feud between Gaetz and McCarthy has been building since McCarthy's election to the position in January, which took 15 painstaking votes amid heavy resistance from Gaetz and other GOP members.
One of the concessions that McCarthy made was to allow a change in House rules in which sitting members can call a snap vote for a successor.
McCarthy has two days to address the legislative body, per the rules of the challenge.
On Monday, McCarthy responded, tweeting, "Bring it on."
The speaker's fate could also be determined by Democrats, whose votes helped McCarthy pass a stop-gap spending bill to avert a government shutdown over the weekend.
According to NBC, some Democrats are looking for political concessions from McCarthy, and it's unclear whether McCarthy has already started courting Democrats for their votes.
"We have a lot of trust issues," House Minority Whip Katherine Clark said on Monday, per NBC. "Every time he has made a promise, he has immediately then rolled back and gone and catered and capitulated to an extreme agenda."
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