PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – In a historic move, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to remove House Speaker Kevin McCarthy from his leadership position on Tuesday.
In a vote led by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) lawmakers voted to oust the California representative in a 216-210 vote. Tuesday’s vote marks the first time the House has voted to remove a sitting speaker, as reported by The Hill.
Reacting to his ouster, Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01) said, “before the vote today, the U.S. House of Representatives had only used the process to vacate the Speaker of the House once. That was more than a century ago, and the motion failed. This is a serious moment in the history of this institution.”
Bonamici continued, in part, “today I voted with my House Democratic colleagues, and several Republicans, to remove Speaker McCarthy from his position because I cannot in good conscience support a Speaker who has consistently empowered his conference’s most extreme members, many of whom refuse to accept the results of a fair and free election. He has stood behind devastating cuts to public education and other government programs that help working families, like SNAP, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, and Head Start.”
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (OR-03) added, “it is another sad chapter of Republican dysfunction. Stay tuned.”
Rep. Val Hoyle (OR-04) expressed the need for a House speaker who is willing to work across the aisle.
“Speaker McCarthy almost brought the government to a shutdown and has empowered the most extreme members of his party. The American people deserve effective government, and we need a Speaker who is willing to work across the aisle to deliver jobs and pass meaningful legislation for working people. I won’t support Speaker McCarthy’s failed leadership. It’s time for House Republicans to pull it together and stop being a distraction from the work that needs to get done.”
Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer (OR-05), who voted against McCarthy’s removal, said the leadership vacancy will stall the House.
“I’m disappointed that some members of this body just voted to paralyze the House. They’ve put politics and personal grudges over the integrity of the chamber and the good of our country. The border is open, gas prices are rising, and government funding runs out in 43 days. We can’t afford to play these political games,” Chavez-DeRemer said in a statement.
In a statement, Rep. Andrea Salinas (OR-06) noted McCarthy’s “profound inability to lead.”
The congresswoman added, “he has consistently used his position to lie and spread misinformation, while allowing the extreme MAGA Freedom Caucus to sow chaos without any consequences. I cannot in good conscience allow this kind of dysfunction and deceit to continue. That is why I joined my Democratic colleagues in voting to remove Kevin McCarthy as Speaker of the House. It is time we choose a Speaker who can honestly and effectively guide the People’s House so we can get back to addressing the issues that matter to Oregonians, like lowering costs for families, tackling the substance use crisis, and improving public safety in our communities.”
KOIN 6 News has reached out to Rep. Cliff Bentz (OR-02) but has not heard back.
This is a developing story.