Vengeful Republicans Expel High-Ranking Democrats from Capitol Offices
Republicans are livid with House Democrats after they unanimously voted to remove Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the House. Although only eight rightwing Republicans supported his removal, their votes were crucial for the success of the effort. Democrats argued that voting against McCarthy was a reflection of their strong dislike for a speaker who had aligned himself with Donald Trump and committed other offenses. Additionally, it is standard practice for the minority party in the House to not vote for the majority’s choice for speaker. However, Republicans are not convinced, and Patrick McHenry, the acting speaker, is retaliating where he can.
Yesterday, McHenry ordered former House speaker Nancy Pelosi to vacate the office she was allowed to use in the Capitol building after stepping down last year. Pelosi, who was away attending a friend’s funeral, expressed her disappointment in the Republican’s departure from tradition. Furthermore, McHenry has also ordered Steny Hoyer, the former Democratic number-two in the House, out of his Capitol office.
The expulsion of McCarthy as speaker has created a political vacuum in the House of Representatives, and it remains uncertain how it will be filled or who will fill it. McCarthy’s removal sets a historical precedent as the first speaker of the House to be removed from the position. With McCarthy out, Republicans now need to find someone else to lead the party in Congress’s lower chamber. Patrick McHenry has arranged for a candidate forum next week, followed by a speaker election.
In other news, President Joe Biden continues his efforts to alleviate student debt by announcing $9 billion in relief for 125,000 borrowers. Former President Donald Trump is addressing California Republicans today, following his involvement in a New York City courtroom where he faces potential damages for inflating the value of his assets. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre will also hold a briefing, where questions about the House of Representatives situation are expected.