By: Ananya Yadati
On November 19, 2022, Nancy Pelosi, former Speaker of the House stepped down after being in that position for 8 years total. This meant that there had to be an election for Speaker of the House. The Speaker of the House elections began on January 3, 2023, and ended on January 7, 2023 when Kevin McCarthy of California won.
The speaker of the House is a job in the House of Representatives branch of Congress. They are in charge of the House of Representatives overall. This means that they decide when bills, or proposed laws, should be voted on, decide who gets to speak on the House floor, and declare what the votes say. It is a very important role because they make sure that the House is keeping order.
The former Speaker of the House was Nancy Pelosi, who was a member of the Democratic party. The people who ran to replace her were Democrat Hakeem Jeffries of New York, Republican Kevin McCarthy, and Republican Andy Biggs of Arizona. However, the primary candidates in this election were Hakeem Jeffries and Kevin McCarthy, since Andy Biggs received few votes.
In this election, there were 15 rounds of voting, which was historic. This is because the person with the majority of votes won’t just win if they have the majority, they specifically need 218 votes in order to win the election. After a strenuous 3 days of voting, Kevin McCarthy won the election by getting 216 votes in comparison to the 212 that were received by Hakeem Jeffries. Many parts of McCarthy’s proposal about what he will accomplish as speaker of the House have been revealed. First, he made many promises regarding government spending. Also, he said he would change a rule to make no-confidence voting easier. Lastly, he agreed to help tackle inflation and improve border security. McCarthy’s speakership will have a big impact on the future of the house because of the concessions he made for a more conservative faction in the House. Read more about what this could mean for the future of the House here.