On Tuesday, U.S. Congressman Dan Bishop, a Republican from North Carolina’s 8th Congressional District, announced he would vote “No” on the motion to remove U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy from the speakership.
“After deliberation, I have decided to vote against the motion to vacate the chair,” Bishop said.
Congressman Matt Gaetz, R-FL, filed the motion to “vacate the chair,” referring to removing the Speaker of the House.
Gaetz, who has been a political opponent of McCarthy for a while, grew frustrated over the weekend after McCarthy brought a short-term funding bill to prevent the government from shutting down to the House floor.
Bishop cited three reasons for keeping McCarthy:
- “McCarthy is an accurate reflection of the current House Republican Conference.”
- “Congress operates by numerosity: there must be a substantial groundswell for an effort toward fundamental change. One person’s play call with roughly s-7 potential supporters portends no path toward success, only chaos. That’s why I haven’t previously moved to vacate the chair myself.”
- “A reckoning is due in the Republican Party to make it a force capable of confronting the crises – and opposition – we face. I have chosen a different path, outside of Congress, to pursue to make it one. I cannot impose this burden on an institution from which I am soon to depart.”
Since the time Bishop announced he would vote to keep McCarthy as Speaker, it appears likely that Democrats will be voting with Gaetz.
McCarthy himself responded, “Probably so,” to a reporter when told that it “sounds likely” McCarthy would be removed.
Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-NY, released a statement saying Democratic leadership would support Gaetz’s bid to remove McCarthy as Speaker.
There are currently 221 Republicans, 212 Democrats, and two current vacancies in the House. Gaetz would need 217 votes to remove McCarthy from the chair.
When this article was published, Gaetz had at least eight Republicans supporting removing McCarthy.
Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-CA, released a statement calling for order in the House but did not indicate whether she would vote to remove McCarthy.
Bishop concluded his statement by saying he respected the courage of those who are taking “a different path.”
Bishop is currently running for North Carolina Attorney General for the 2024 election.
Following the publishing of this article, the U.S. House voted 216 to 210 in favor of removing Kevin McCarthy as Speaker of the House. North Carolina’s Patrick McHenry was named the interim Speaker Pro Tem.