The House of Representatives is still trying to vote for a Speaker of the House for the upcoming legislative session. With no decision made, the House voted to adjourn until 8 p.m. on Wednesday.
Republicans took control of the house this week. Despite having weeks to decide on a new house leader, the GOP can’t get it done.
Inside the House chambers, lawmakers were packed wall to wall.
For the first time in a century, the nominee for House speaker did not win the gavel on the first vote or second. The House has now made it to the sixth round of voting.
“Let’s all take a second. Take a look around. I know people are getting frustrated,” said one representative during the voting.
Democrats would love to see their congressional leader, Hakeem Jeffries, become speaker, but the Republicans are in the majority. The GOP just can’t settle on who will lead them.
Naples Congressman Byron Donalds cast his first two votes for Representative Kevin McCarthy. Then he was the first to change his vote on his third ballot from McCarthy to Jim Jordan.
On Wednesday, Donalds changed his vote again when Chip Roy of Texas said, “Today, I’m rising to nominate Byron Donalds for Speaker of the House of Representatives.”
Donalds then voted for himself. After round five failed to produce a new speaker, Donalds told CBS News, “If it takes congress a couple of days to get itself organized in the appropriate way, where members all members are empowered to do the job they’ve been sent here to do by their voters. That’s a good thing for congress. It’s a good thing for Washington. It’s a great thing for America.”
Political Scientist Aubrey Jewett said with no hand on the gavel, lawmakers can’t get down to business.
“The pressure is really on them, the republicans, to select the speaker because they’re in the majority, and so they are supposed to be controlling the speakership. They’re supposed to be controlling the committees, are supposed to be controlling the flow of legislation, but until they actually choose the speaker, they can’t do any of that,” said Jewett.
Donalds said if chosen to be the speaker during round six or beyond, he would reluctantly serve.