ElectionsPolitical Parties

Race is On to Fill Speaker Position

Posted on in Elections · Political Parties

In an unprecedented move, Kevin McCarthy was ousted from the speakership in the U.S. House of Representatives less than one year after he inherited the gavel. Eight Republicans and all House Democrats voted 216-210 to adopt the motion to vacate introduced by Representative Matt Gaetz. McCarthy, who reinstated the obscure rule giving any one member the power to challenge the speaker, leaves the speakership only one week after he brokered a deal that extended government funding for 45 days. No business can be conducted in the House until a permanent speaker is selected. 

Why did Democrats vote to vacate?

Instructors: click the link below to download this week’s lecture for use in your classroom. The deck contains a writing prompt and a debate question as well as other assessment questions.

Download: CQP_Lecture_Spark_PPT_Race is On to Fill Speaker Position


News Articles

Kevin McCarthy ousted from House speakership after Republican rebellion: What you missed

USA Today



McCarthy says he will not resign from House after ouster as speaker




4 takeaways from the historic ousting of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy




Will the Motion to Vacate Be Vacated?

New York Times



Steve Scalise and Jim Jordan running for House speaker as GOP race to replace McCarthy kicks off

CBS News



Scalise and Jordan battle over centrists in speakership fight




Curveballs keep coming in already-unprecedented Speaker’s race

The Hill



Rep. Hern Rules Out House Speaker Bid, Leaving Two-Way Scalise-Jordan Battle





Writing: Explain why some analysts believe Democrats should have voted against the motion to vacate. Which McCarthy actions convinced Democrats to depose the former speaker?

Debate: In a divided government, should the new speaker seek to advance the Republican agenda or build a coalition with Democrats?

Poll: Should the rule allowing one member to introduce a motion to vacate be preserved?

Short Answer: Why do some experts believe that the Trump endorsement of Jim Jordan could be a double-edged sword for Republicans in the 2024 elections?

News Quiz



Both major candidates for speaker focused on winning over centrists in Republican Party. (T/F)

Steve Scalise’s institutional knowledge and fundraising prowess are seen as his strengths. (T/F)

Multiple Choice

Early news reports suggested that Kevin McCarthy would ___________ but were later refuted by the former speaker?

  1. run for senate from California
  2. run for speaker again
  3. leave the congress
  4. switch parties

Which near fatal event did Steve Scalise overcome in 2017?

  1. a car crash
  2. a heart attack
  3. pneumonia
  4. a shooting during a congressional baseball game

What did former Speaker John Boehner once call Jim Jordan?

  1. a strong advocate for the Buckeye state
  2. a legislative terrorist
  3. a leader of men like Woody Hayes
  4. a champion of bipartisanship

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