January 5, 2023 GOP deadlocked over House speaker vote

By Aditi Sangal, Adrienne Vogt, Maureen Chowdhury and Elise Hammond, CNN

Updated 9:41 a.m. ET, January 6, 2023
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4:30 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

Here's a list of items that are stalled until a House speaker is elected

From CNN's Jack Forrest

The Capitol is seen amid cloudy skies early on Thursday.
The Capitol is seen amid cloudy skies early on Thursday. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)

House Republicans’ failure to elect a speaker after days of voting has frozen business in the chamber. Here's a list of what's stalled as the stalemate continues:

No oversight: “The Biden administration is going unchecked and there is no oversight of the White House, State Department, Department of Defense, or the intelligence community. We cannot let personal politics place the safety and security of the United States at risk,” the incoming chairs of several committees, including foreign affairs and armed services, said in a statement released on Thursday morning.

No clearance for sensitive and classified information: GOP Rep. Mike Gallagher said he was denied from entering a meeting with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff because he was informed by House security that he doesn’t yet have a clearance.

GOP Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick said: “I sit on the House Intelligence Committee. We oversee all 19 intelligence agencies. We are currently offline.”

No House rules: Every new Congress must pass a new set of House rules, so without a speaker to oversee adoption of those rules, none will technically exist.

No payment for staff: Without an approved House Rules package by the end of business on Jan. 13, committees also won’t be able to pay staff, according to a letter sent last week by the committee in charge of administrative matters, which was first reported by Politico and obtained by CNN. The same memo warned that student loan payments for committee staff wouldn’t be disbursed if a rules package isn’t adopted by mid-January.

But members-elect will get paid: Per precedents of the chamber, the pay period for members-elect still starts on Jan. 3, even if the first session of Congress begins after that dateas long as their credentials have been filed with the House clerk.

No legislating: For committees whose chairs aren’t known, they will be headed up in the interim by the committee’s senior-most Republican who also served on the panel in the last Congress, according to the letter sent last week. But there will be no legislating to amend and approve bills before they make their way to the floor for a vote. That means Republicans may also have to wait before tackling some of their priorities, including investigations into President Joe Biden’s administration and family.

CNN’s Zachary B. Wolf, Ali Zaslav, Ted Barrett, Melanie Zanona, Lauren Fox, Clare Foran, Manu Raju, Morgan Rimmer, Andrea Cambron, Shawna Mizelle and Kaanita Iyer contributed reporting to this post.

4:42 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

McHenry calls current talks over speakership most hopeful in weeks — but says "we still have miles to go"

From CNN's Morgan Rimmer

Rep. Patrick McHenry, center, talks to fellow House members on Thursday.
Rep. Patrick McHenry, center, talks to fellow House members on Thursday. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

GOP Rep. Patrick McHenry, leaving the ongoing meeting in Rep. Tom Emmer's office, told reporters that these talks over the House speakership are "the most hopeful set of conversations we've had in weeks." 

"I think we have the right contours that enable us to get Kevin McCarthy to have a majority vote," he said. "And that's assurances on the structure of how we're going to deal with each other, how we're going to enable sound public policy, and the type of public policy that'll be the front and center for this Congress." 

Asked how many more ballots it could take to get there, McHenry shrugged. Pressed on the possibility of adjourning after this vote, he replied "it's still in process. We still have miles to go." 

He also noted, "I think this is us making clear our purpose for this Congress and how we're going to do it. In that way, it's clarifying what our intent is, and that enables trust where some have had trust issues."


4:16 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

McCarthy appears to suffer defeat in 9th speaker ballot

From CNN staff

Rep. Troy Nehls, left, nominates Rep. Kevin McCarthy for House speaker on Thursday.
Rep. Troy Nehls, left, nominates Rep. Kevin McCarthy for House speaker on Thursday. (Eric Lee/Bloomberg/Getty images)

Rep. Kevin McCarthy appears to again suffer defeat in the ninth round of voting for House speaker as more than five Republicans opposed his bid.

A tenth round of voting would be the longest speaker contest in 164 years.

A group of hardline Republicans have so far derailed McCarthy's bid to become House speaker — even after McCarthy reportedly proposed major concessions late Wednesday.

Why CNN says "appears to" suffer a defeat before the gavel goes down: Members-elect have the ability to change their votes before the vote is gaveled over. CNN is following along and tallying the voice votes as they happen, but it's important to be clear that anything could technically change before the vote ends. 

4:17 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

NOW: 9th round of voting begins as McCarthy's path to speaker remains uncertain

From CNN staff

The House is now voting on a ninth ballot for speaker. This ties the number of rounds needed to elect a speaker in 1923.

Aside from Rep. Kevin McCarthy, two other Republicans have also been nominated: Rep. Byron Donalds and Rep. Kevin Hern.

Democrats nominated Rep. Hakeem Jeffries.

McCarthy has failed to reach the majority needed to win the speakership on eight ballots.

Despite concessions from McCarthy to hardliners, a group of 20 GOP lawmakers are not voting for the top Republican.

CNN's Annie Grayer, Clare Foran and Kristin Wilson contributed reporting to this post.

3:59 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

Rep. Lauren Boebert nominates Rep. Kevin Hern for House speaker

Rep. Lauren Boebert delivers remarks from the House floor on Thursday.
Rep. Lauren Boebert delivers remarks from the House floor on Thursday. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

GOP Rep. Kevin Hern has been nominated for House speaker by Rep. Lauren Boebert.

She said "McCarthy does not have the votes," she said, saying that Republicans need to start evaluating what to do next.

Hern is the head of the Republican Study Committee and received two votes during the eighth round of voting.

"America doesn't want more talk," Boebert said. "They want action."

"I want to get to work, too. America is tired of rhetoric, and they want results," she added.

3:43 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

In meeting with moderates, McCarthy downplayed the concessions he's made

From CNN's Manu Raju

Rep. Kevin McCarthy met with a group of members today to discuss the concessions. He told the members that there isn’t much of a difference in allowing for just one member to call for a vote to oust a speaker since he had already agreed to reduce it to a five-vote threshold, according to Rep. Don Bacon.

Bacon also said he spoke with McCarthy staff about the promises to include members of the Freedom Caucus on the powerful House Rules Committee. He said he wasn’t worried about it because they assured him there would be enough other GOP members on the panel to offset their influence.

3:51 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

Byron Donalds again nominated in speaker vote

Rep. Byron Donalds looks on during Thursday's proceedings.
Rep. Byron Donalds looks on during Thursday's proceedings. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Republican Rep. Matt Rosendale nominated Rep. Byron Donalds in the speakership bid, as the ninth round of voting is set to begin.

Rosendale noted that "we have had more discussions and debate over the last three days than I have participated in on this floor for the last two years."

"We need to have change. We need to fix this broken system," he added in a lengthy speech.

3:37 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

McCarthy nominated for 9th House speaker ballot

Rep. Kevin McCarthy shakes hands with Rep. Troy Nehls after being nominated for a ninth round of voting.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy shakes hands with Rep. Troy Nehls after being nominated for a ninth round of voting. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Rep. Kevin McCarthy has just been nominated for a ninth round of voting in his quest for House speakership. He was nominated by Rep. Troy Nehls of Texas.

In his pitch to fellow Republicans, Nehls said McCarthy "understands he must protect that speaker's gavel and abide the will of the American people. The decisions we make in the 118th Congress are critical to the future of our country."

"Let's do what's in the best interest of the American people. Let's get to work. Let's elect Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the House," Nehls added.

Though negotiations have been happening on the House floor in between votes and in closed-door talks, McCarthy said he will continue to face opposition until he reaches a deal with his detractors. 

3:38 p.m. ET, January 5, 2023

JUST IN: McCarthy defeated in 8th round of voting for House speaker

From CNN's Annie Grayer, Kristin Wilson and Clare Foran 

Rep. Kevin McCarthy was defeated for an eighth time in his bid for speakership after multiple Republicans voted for Florida Rep. Byron Donalds.

Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries had the unanimous support of his caucus.

No member of the new Congress can be sworn in to office without a Speaker of the House voted in.

Here's a look at the vote tally:

  • 212: Jeffries
  • 201: McCarthy
  • 17: Donalds
  • 2: Rep. Kevin Hern
  • 1: Former President Donald Trump
  • 1: Present