A different pattern has emerged in the 11 rounds of voting for House Speaker.

Someone nominates Kevin McCarthy, someone nominates Hakeem Jeffries, someone nominates someone else. Then a clerk reads out the names and records the votes of the 434 members (there is one vacancy in the 435-seat House), even though everyone knows that no candidate can reach the required majority, and even though everyone knows That’s how everyone will vote because we’ve done that – wait, how many times have we done that? – 11 times already, and the only thing that changes is who else is voting.

So it’s fair to ask why they’re all still out there, still voting.

The answer is that they have no choice.

under federal laws, a newly elected House must take the oath of the speaker, and the speaker must take the oath to the members “before entering upon any other business”. In other words, until the House elects the Speaker, it cannot legally do anything else. While it is in session, it must vote for the Speaker (a tedious, time-consuming affair because House precedent says The speaker is chosen by a “viva voce” vote, a live voice vote in which each member-elect says aloud a name). If the vote fails, then the vote has to be held again. and then.

The only other option is not to be in session. But in order to adjourn, someone must propose to do so, and the House must agree.

Democrats would not vote to adjourn; He says Republicans should work together and choose a speaker. And Mr. McCarthy’s critics have been reluctant to do so because it is in his interest to repeatedly highlight that the Republican leader lacks the votes to win the speakership.

The House did manage to adjourn on Thursday night till Friday afternoon. But at other points in the day, Republicans didn’t feel they had the votes to do so. If they could not muster enough votes to adjourn, the House had to remain in session. So they had to keep voting on the speaker. The same will be true if they can’t muster the votes to adjourn on Friday.

In times of crisis and uncertainty, House leaders often seek a recess, a time in Congress that allows them to pause and regroup without losing control of the floor. But even this is not possible in this procedural limbo.

“Recess is a process covered by the rules,” said Matthew Bonaccorsi, communications director for the House Rules Committee. “Recess is not an option because the authority to do so is vested in the rules package for each Congress, and the House cannot pass the rules package until it has elected a speaker.”

#House #voting #Speaker

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *