GOP Deals Massive Blow To Speaker McCarthy

Photo by Ian Hutchinson on Unsplash

( – This Thursday, the House witnessed an unexpected turn of events as the Pentagon funding bill, championed by Speaker Kevin McCarthy of California’s Republican Party, was halted from proceeding. A group of six Republicans, breaking from their party lines, joined the Democrats to oppose the bill, culminating in a close 216-212 vote.

McCarthy’s push to secure appropriations by the month-end faced yet another hurdle. Noteworthy among the opposing Republicans were Dan Bishop from North Carolina, Marjorie Taylor Greene from Georgia, and Tom Cole from Oklahoma, the latter of whom made a last-minute vote switch, a maneuver that could allow the bill’s future revival.

The suspense-laden voting process saw a deadlock at 213-213, only to be broken by Democratic Representatives Sanford Bishop Jr. and Donald Payne Jr.

Although votes that determine legislative debates usually see members toeing their party lines, this particular bill had already faced a similar challenge earlier in the week.

Hoping to move past the prior setback, McCarthy was optimistic as two previous dissenters, Ralph Norman and Ken Buck, signaled their support. Their initial reservations about budgetary constraints seemed to have been addressed by McCarthy’s revised proposal. Yet, Thursday brought fresh opposition, with Republicans Greene and Crane joining the dissenters. Crane cited the necessity for systemic change, while Greene was concerned about the inclusion of funds directed towards Ukraine.

The Pentagon funding bill’s journey has been rocky. Initial plans for a vote around mid-September were shelved due to budgetary concerns from conservatives. Undeterred, McCarthy remained committed to showcasing the bill’s importance for the defense sector. However, his efforts hit another roadblock with the recent vote.

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