Kevin McCarthy Elected House Speaker Amidst Election Drama, Vows to Address ‘Rise of Chinese Communist Party’ in Inaugural Speech.
On Saturday, Representative Kevin McCarthy of California was elected as the House speaker after 14 failed votes and concessions to a small group of right-wing Republicans who had been opposing him.
The final vote tally was 216 votes for McCarthy and 212 votes for Representative Hakeem Jeffries of New York, with six voting present.
This victory came as a surprise after it appeared that McCarthy had lost on the previous vote, but he was able to secure the speakership after President Donald Trump reportedly called Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida and urged him to clear the way for McCarthy.
This marks the first time in 15 rounds of voting that McCarthy did not face opposition from within his own party. McCarthy’s victory also gives him the distinction of needing the most speaker election tallies since before the Civil War.
Kevin McCarthy has promised to address the issue of public debt and the “rise of the Chinese Communist Party” in the House of Representatives.
“We will address America’s long-term challenges: the debt and the rise of the Chinese Communist Party. The Congress must speak in one voice on these issues,” McCarthy said in his maiden speech as speaker.
McCarthy’s election marks the longest speakership election in 160 years.
In his inaugural speech, McCarthy stated his desire for the US to win the economic competition with China and announced the creation of a bipartisan Select Committee on China to investigate how to bring back jobs that have been lost to China.
“As for the Chinese Communist Party, we will create a bipartisan Select Committee on China to investigate how to bring back the hundreds of thousands of jobs that went to China. Then we will win this economic competition,” he said, evoking applause from the lawmakers.
McCarthy also emphasized the need for restoring trust within the country. This election marks a change in leadership as McCarthy replaces Nancy Pelosi of the Democratic Party as speaker.
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