Speed Reads

same story, different day

House adjourns after Kevin McCarthy loses 11th vote for speaker

The House of Representatives adjourned Thursday evening, ending another day without electing a speaker.

Over the course of three days, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has lost 11 rounds of voting in his quest to become speaker of the House. With the Republicans having a slim majority in the House and Democrats unified behind their nominee, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), McCarthy cannot afford to lose many Republican votes. Yet round after round, a group of 20 ultra-conservative lawmakers has been blocking him, despite concessions he has agreed to make, like allowing floor votes on instituting member term limits.

Several McCarthy allies still expressed optimism on Thursday night that a final deal between the two camps would soon be reached. "We are making progress," Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) told reporters. Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pa.) didn't give a definitive date for when it might happen, saying, "If it takes until tomorrow, it takes until tomorrow. If it takes until Fourth of July, it takes until Fourth of July. Either way, Kevin McCarthy will be the speaker."

Fresh off of his 11th defeat, McCarthy stopped to talk to reporters, and said he remains confident that he'll be elected, some day. "I'm not putting any timeline on it — I just think we've got some progress going on," he said. "We got members talking. I think we've got a little movement and we'll see." One of his most vocal opponents, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), also spoke about the emerging deal, announcing he won't support it because "it results in Kevin McCarthy becoming the speaker." The 12th round of voting starts Friday afternoon.