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Republican Civil War Over McCarthy May Cost Them in 2024

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Republican's Civil War Over Kevin McCarthy May Cost Them in 2024

Republican Kevin McCarthy’s bid to become Speaker of the United States House of Representatives was derailed in a series of votes on Tuesday, as hardline conservatives rebelled against him, throwing the new Republican majority into disarray.

McCarthy twice fell short of the 218-vote majority required to succeed Democrat Nancy Pelosi as House Speaker in what could be a brutal showdown between hardliners and the overwhelming majority of House Republicans. The House failed to elect a speaker on the first ballot for the first time in a century.

McCarthy also appeared to be lacking in support as the vote entered a third round on Tuesday afternoon, with at least 20 Republicans voting for popular conservative Representative Jim Jordan to try to block McCarthy, despite the fact that Jordan did not run.

McCarthy gave no indication that he would drop out of the race after the second ballot, telling reporters, “We stay in it ’til we win… it will eventually change.”

A protracted speaker election could jeopardize House Republicans’ ability to move quickly on priorities such as investigations into President Joe Biden’s administration and family, as well as legislative priorities involving the economy, U.S. energy independence, and border security.

A standoff would effectively paralyze the House and force lawmakers to consider another candidate. Along with Jordan, incoming Majority Leader Steve Scalise was considered a possible candidate.

Republican McCarthy Stumped by Biggs and Gaetz

McCarthy had served as House minority leader and sought to become speaker, the second in line of succession to the presidency of the United States, only to face stiff opposition from his party’s right flank.

In Tuesday’s vote, House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries defeated McCarthy by 212 to 203 votes. Representative Andy Biggs, a hardline conservative, ran against McCarthy on the first ballot and received 10 votes.

A majority of those voting, rather than a plurality, is required to select a speaker.

In the second vote, popular conservative Jordan attempted to rally support for California Republican McCarthy, only to be defeated by McCarthy opponent Matt Gaetz of Florida.

“We need to rally around him,” Jordan said passionately on the House floor. “I believe Kevin McCarthy is the right person to lead us.”

Jordan, 58, is a close friend of former President Donald Trump and a co-founder of the House Freedom Caucus.

Challenges Republicans face

Jordan, a former college wrestler who represents an Ohio congressional district, was nominated as McCarthy’s opponent on Tuesday but voted for him three times. Jordan is preparing to lead the House Judiciary Committee’s investigation into the Justice Department and FBI.

It was an unsettling start to McCarthy’s new majority, and it highlights the challenges Republicans may face over the next two years as they prepare for the 2024 presidential election. Their slim majority gives a small group of hardliners more clout, allowing them to focus on defeating Democrats and pushing various investigations.

Republicans won a narrow 222-212 majority in the midterm elections in November, which means McCarthy – or any candidate for speaker – will need to unite a fractious caucus in order to take the gavel. Democrats have a slim Senate majority.

McCarthy’s opponents are concerned that he is less deeply invested in the House’s culture wars and partisan rivalries, which have dominated since Trump’s presidency.

McCarthy tried to persuade the holdouts during a closed-door party meeting before the vote, vowing to stay in the race until he received the necessary votes, but many attendees emerged unscathed.

It was unclear whether McCarthy, who has a large majority of his caucus’ support, would be able to overcome the hard-line opposition and win the speakership. He ran for speaker once before, in 2015, but was defeated by conservative opposition.

McCarthy has worked in politics his entire adult life, first as a congressional staffer, then as a state legislator before being elected to the House in 2006. McCarthy, as speaker, would be well placed to thwart Biden’s legislative ambitions.

Any Republican speaker, however, will face the difficult task of managing a House Republican caucus that is moving ever further to the right, with uncompromising tendencies and – at least among some lawmakers – close allegiances to Trump.

Over a two-month period in the 1850s, the record number of voting rounds to elect a House speaker was 133.

After Nancy Pelosi, the first female speaker, announced her intention to step down, the Democrats chose Jeffries to serve as minority leader. Pelosi will continue to serve as a representative.

Republican civil war could cost them in 2024

The growing enmity between pro-Trump and anti-Trump forces raises the prospect of something no Republican wants: a GOP civil war that could split the party in two, paving the way for Democrats to win big in 2024.

The fear is that two years of infighting will jeopardize the White House. Republicans are concerned that it will give Democrats control of the House and Senate for at least two more years.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) raised the possibility last week, saying his “greatest fear” is a repeat of the 1964 party split between Barry Goldwater and Nelson Rockefeller.

“I can see a Trump-anti-Trump war over the next two years that guarantees Biden’s re-election in a landslide and guarantees Democrats control everything,” Gingrich told The Hill.

Top Republicans are not yet ready to panic and declare that a repeat of 1964 is unlikely, as former President Trump and other potential candidates stake their claims.

“There are divisions in the Democratic Party. “You have tensions here, but no,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC). “It is the norm for political parties to be dysfunctional. It is not an exception on either side.”

Several candidates pushed across the primary finish line by the former president failed to win key Senate races, including Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Nevada. Sen. Raphael Warnock (D) of Georgia defeated Trump-backed Republican candidate Herschel Walker.

Republicans are still picking up the pieces from the disastrous 2022 midterm elections, in which the party expected to retake the Senate after a two-year hiatus. Neither of these things occurred, leaving the GOP to plan for the future while determining how much influence Trump will have.

Geoff Thomas is a seasoned staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. With his sharp writing skills and deep understanding of SEO, he consistently delivers high-quality, engaging content that resonates with readers. Thomas' articles are well-researched, informative, and written in a clear, concise style that keeps audiences hooked. His ability to craft compelling narratives while seamlessly incorporating relevant keywords has made him a valuable asset to the VORNews team.

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US Speaker Mike Johnson Facing “Motion to Vacate” Over Ukraine Funding

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Mike Johnson Facing "Motion to Vacate"
Mike Johnson Facing Motion to Vacate: Image VOA

Mike Johnson, the Republican Speaker of the House, may suffer political consequences for approving $61 billion in fresh aid to Ukraine on Saturday. He relied largely on Democratic cooperation not only for final votes, but also to clear procedural hurdles before those votes.

His decision to turn to Democrats was forced by fierce opposition from a small group of Republicans, some in positions of authority in the House, who opposed any further help to Ukraine. Now, the Republicans may force a vote on whether to remove Mr Johnson from the speaker’s chair.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) announced Sunday that her motion to vacate the Speakership is “coming” regardless of what House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) decides, while also avoiding questions about an alternate plan if Johnson is removed.

“Mike Johnson’s Speakership is gone. He ought to do the right thing and resign so that we can move on in a controlled process, and if he doesn’t, he will be removed,” she said Sunday on Fox News.

Maria Bartiromo of “Sunday Morning Futures” then asked Greene if she intends to proceed with her motion to vacate, which she filed last month. She has not yet brought the vote to the House floor or stated what might motivate her to do so.

“It’s coming regardless of what Mike Johnson does. And three more Republicans have joined us for a special election coming up soon. “People need to be aware that this is possible,” Greene said.

Greene: Motion to vacate is “coming soon” for Mike Johnson

Greene took the initial step toward Speaker Mike Johnson’s removal after the House passed a funding bill to avoid a partial government shutdown only hours before the deadline. The deal received support from both parties, but House conservatives questioned it.

At the time, Greene described the move as “basically a warning,” but tensions rose in recent weeks when Johnson endorsed stand-alone funding to Ukraine, after previously asking that help to Kyiv be linked to security measures for the US southern border.

“[Johnson] has completely betrayed Republican voters all over the country, and he is absolutely working for the Democrats, pipe-passing, the Biden administration’s agenda,” Greene said in a statement on Sunday.

“So, this Speakership is utterly swamped. Mike Johnson is the only one who has tried to hold on to it and is in utter denial.”

Johnson termed the ouster threat “absurd” last week and refused to resign. His comments came shortly after Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) became the first Republican to publicly support Greene’s move. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) publicly supported the motion last week.

Uni’ party is in control of the government

Bartiromo asked Greene for her reaction to critics who claim she is “creating chaos” for the GOP conference, to which she replied, “Those who are calling this ‘drama’ are the very people that are responsible for the drama that the American people are having to live through every single day.”

“Those on the left, those on the right, the ‘uni’ party that’s in control of our government are the ones that have inflicted the American people with nearly $35 trillion in debt, ripped our border wide open,” she went on to say.

Bartiromo then asked Greene for an alternative strategy in the event that Johnson was fired.

“Our strategy is to offer the American people a reason to trust and fight for us. The American people support President Trump as the next president of the United States because they have seen him in action. He battled against the Democrats agenda. He put America first.

They badly want him to lead this country again because they believe he will do so,” Greene said. Bartiromo then informed Greene that she had “not given a plan for the Speaker’s role,” before inquiring about the motion’s timing.

The motion to vacate is the House’s procedure for removing its speaker. The chamber’s existing procedures allow any member, Democrat or Republican, to introduce the motion.

If introduced as a “privileged” resolution, the House must consider it at some point, albeit procedural votes may delay it. It need simply a simple majority to pass. The motion to vacate received 216 votes to 210 votes.

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Biden Administration Bans Drilling In Nearly Half Of Alaska Petroleum Reserve In Sweeping Win For Climate Advocates

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In a big victory for climate and environmental groups, the Biden administration completed a rule on Friday that prohibits fossil fuel drilling on nearly half of Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve, among other substantial conservation measures.

The Interior Department will prohibit oil drilling on more than 13 million acres in the Western Arctic, including approximately 40% of the NPR-A, a remote area home to protected wildlife species such as polar bears and caribou.

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Biden Administration Bans Drilling In Nearly Half Of Alaska Petroleum Reserve In Sweeping Win For Climate Advocates

The reserve consists of more than 23 million acres of public land and an underground emergency oil supply for the United States Navy, which was established in the early 1920s. It has lately been the site of the Willow project, which is owned by ConocoPhillips and is a contentious Arctic oil drilling operation.

When the Biden administration approved Willow in March 2023, it generated a social media reaction from young people, as well as environmental and climate activists. Friday’s measure could boost President Joe Biden’s support among young voters.

“These natural wonders demand our protection,” Biden said in a statement. Biden said he was “proud” of his administration’s decision to protect more than 13 million acres in the Western Arctic, but added that “as the climate crisis threatens communities across the country, more must be done.”

Some Alaska Natives are critical of the drilling restriction covering such a large area of the NPR-A. It has sparked debate among Alaska’s bipartisan congressional delegation, as well as Alaska Native groups, who claim they rely on oil drilling tax money to pay schools and basic services.

The final rule “does not reflect our communities’ wishes,” said Voice of the Arctic Iñupiat President Nagruk Harcharek. The move “will hurt the very residents the federal government purports to help by rolling back years of progress, impoverishing our communities, and imperiling our Iñupiaq culture.”

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Biden Administration Bans Drilling In Nearly Half Of Alaska Petroleum Reserve In Sweeping Win For Climate Advocates

The restriction will also expose the president to Republican criticism for failing to prioritize American energy independence and driving up fuel prices. However, during Biden’s presidency, the United States has produced more oil than any other country in history, according to CNN Business, and petrol prices have dropped $1.35 since their all-time high in June 2022.

In addition to conserving a large portion of the NPR-A on Friday, the Biden administration tried to stop the Trump administration-approved Ambler road in the Alaskan wilderness. If developed, the road would provide access to a proposed copper mine. The government indicated that it intended to take “no action” on the mine, essentially limiting the road’s access to federal territory.

Ambler Metals, the business seeking to mine copper in the region, said it was “deeply disappointed” by Interior’s decision. According to Ambler’s managing director, Kaleb Froehlich, the move would deprive local communities of jobs and tax income, as well as prevent the United States from building a domestic supply of minerals important to renewable energy technologies and national security.

The Alaska announcements cap off a busy week for Biden’s Interior Department. On Thursday, the agency unveiled a new regulation that elevates conservation to the same level as other public land uses such as grazing, mining, and energy production. The new conservation law applies to 245 million acres, the most of which are in the Western United States, or roughly one-tenth of the country’s territory.

According to CNN, Biden plans to enlarge two national monuments in California next week, adding to the ones he has already named during his presidency.

Interior Secretary Deb Haaland stated that the administration’s Alaska conservation announcements “underscore our commitment to ensure that places too special to develop remain intact for the communities and species that rely on them.”

In a statement, Haaland stated that the move would be a significant step toward preserving “the way of life for the Indigenous people who have called this special place home since time immemorial.”

Environmentalists and several indigenous groups praised Biden’s statements on Alaska conservation as a “important step.”

“It’s no secret that the Reserve–a vast region of tundra and wetlands teeming with wildlife–has frequently landed in the crosshairs of the insatiable fossil fuel industry,” said Earthjustice attorney Jeremy Lieb in a statement. “We applaud this move and call for even bolder action to keep the fossil fuel industry out of the Arctic, for the sake of the climate and future generations.”

alaska

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Biden Administration Bans Drilling In Nearly Half Of Alaska Petroleum Reserve In Sweeping Win For Climate Advocates

In a statement, Rosemary Ahtuangaruak, the former mayor of the North Slope village of Nuiqsut and a staunch opponent of Willow, called on the Biden administration to build on the protections, saying it would help Alaska Natives “continue to sustain and pass along the traditions and activities of our elders for years to come.”

In a recent interview with CNN, Ahtuangaruak stated that building of infrastructure, as well as ice and gravel roads for the Willow project, is well advanced. Ahtuangaruak is concerned that the project is already having an impact on the annual caribou migration, which is a major source of food for people.

“The animals have already begun their migration; we also have animals that get impeded and get stuck on the ice road areas,” Ahtuangaruak, a reporter for CNN, said “It’s really tough to work through all these issues.”

SOURCE – CNN

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G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

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Paris police find no weapons on a man detained at Iran’s consulate.

Police said Friday that they discovered no weapons on a man held at the Iranian consulate in Paris after responding to a report of a suspicious man carrying a grenade and an explosives vest.

A Paris police spokesperson told The Associated Press that authorities were verifying the man’s identity but discovered no such weapons on him or in his car.

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G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not permitted to be publicly identified under police procedure.

Some of the police, special agents, and firefighters who rushed to the situation at the consulate were later spotted leaving the area after being arrested. A police cordon remained in place, although traffic had resumed in the area.

According to the official, the individual was observed late Friday morning, and police initiated a special operation as soon as they were notified.

The event occurred at a time of heightened tensions in the Middle East, as Paris prepares to host the summer Olympics.

The director of the United Nations’ nuclear inspector says there was no damage to the Isfahan nuclear facility following a purported Israeli drone attack on a major air base near the Iranian city.

When asked about the nuclear facility on Sky News, International Atomic Energy Agency Director-General Rafael Mariano Grossi stated, “There hasn’t been any damage at the site or anything that would indicate that (there) were hits nearby or something that could lead you to believe that there was an intention to reach these places.”

The Isfahan facility has three small research reactors supplied by China, as well as fuel production and other activities for Iran’s civilian nuclear program.

iran

G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

Isfahan also contains locations related with Iran’s nuclear program, such as the subterranean Natanz enrichment facility, which has been frequently attacked by suspected Israeli sabotage strikes.

Iranian authorities claim that air defenses fired on a key air base in Isfahan, which has long housed Iran’s fleet of American-made F-14 Tomcats, purchased prior to the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

Missile remnants were discovered Friday near Latifiya, southwest of Baghdad.

An official with an Iranian-backed militia in Iraq, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak with journalists, said the missile was shot down due to jamming efforts. The Iraqi army lacks jamming systems similar to those used to destroy the rocket, but Iran has handed such gear to its allied militias.

It was unclear whether the rocket was part of an Israeli attack on Iran or last weekend’s Iranian attack on Israel. Local media images of the site showed what seemed to be an air-to-surface missile. There were no reports of Iran firing air-to-surface missiles during Saturday’s onslaught, which comprised over 300 drones, ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles.

iran

G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

Tehran launched the attack in response to a purported Israeli strike in Syria on April 1, which killed two Iranian generals in an Iranian consulate building.

SOURCE (AP)

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