McCarthy ousted as House speaker in dramatic vote as Democrats join with GOP critics to topple him

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Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., is surrounded by press and police on the way to the chamber, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023. McCarthy’s ability to remain in leadership is now seriously at risk after the House voted to move ahead with an effort by hard-right Republican critics to oust him. Tuesday’s narrow vote was forced by McCarthy’s chief rival, Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida. (AP Photo)

Speaker Kevin McCarthy was voted out of the job Tuesday in an extraordinary showdown, a first in U.S. history, The 216-210 vote, forced by a contingent of hard-right conservatives, throws the House and its Republican leadership into chaos.

McCarthy’s chief rival, Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, brought forward the “motion to vacate” drawing together more than a handful of conservative Republican critics of the speaker and many Democrats who say he is unworthy of leadership.

Next steps are uncertain, but there is no obvious successor to lead the House Republican majority.

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