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brooklynite

(94,227 posts)
Wed Oct 4, 2023, 09:27 AM Oct 2023

McCarthy's Extraordinary Downfall Reflects an Ungovernable G.O.P. [View all]

New York Times

Kevin McCarthy did two things right, but too many other things wrong.

His extraordinary ouster that unsettled Washington on Tuesday and left the House in chaos was the culmination of a tumultuous nine months that began in unprecedented fashion in January with 15 roll call votes to claim his gavel and ended in unprecedented fashion with a single one to vacate the speaker’s chair.

In between, the gregarious Californian, previously known more as a backslapper and prolific fund-raiser than a legislative wizard, narrowly pulled the country back from the brink of crisis — twice. But he took many other actions, and said many things, that antagonized hard-line Republicans, Democrats and the White House. When the critical moment came, no one was willing to race to his rescue.

And he failed to master the art of corralling a deeply divided Republican majority that could never quite bring itself to rally behind him when it came time to choose normalcy over chaos. With the G.O.P. base increasingly hungry for insurgency and confrontation, Mr. McCarthy found himself out of step, a problem that is likely to plague any candidate who tries to succeed him.

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