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McCarthy offers concessions to secure votes from GOP holdouts ahead of seventh speaker vote

The 7th speaker vote is expected to be held on Thursday at noon when the House reconvenes

January 5, 2023 10:53am

Updated: January 6, 2023 8:26am

House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy overnight made several concessions to conference members blocking his path to the speakership – including ones on the appropriations process and another on his super PAC's involvement in upcoming elections, as the seventh round of voting gets underway Thursday.

The House adjourned on Wednesday evening until noon Thursday after McCarthy lost on the sixth ballot, which prompted negotiations with the members of the House Freedom Caucus who repeatedly voted against the California Republican.  

The concessions on the table, according to a source, include changes to the rules surrounding the appropriations process that would allow amendments on the floor from any member regardless of the committees they sit on, a vote on term limits for members of Congress and two seats for House Freedom Caucus members on the House Rules Committee. The Congressional Leadership Fund, the independent super PAC endorsed by McCarthy, agreed to "not spend in any open-seat primaries in safe Republican districts and CLF will not grant resources to other super PAC's [sic] to do so," according to a statement from the group. 

Florida GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz said McCarthy has agreed to allow one member to motion for a vote to oust a speaker, lowering the threshold from five.

McCarthy can only afford to lose 4 votes from Republicans in the speaker election, given the party's slim 222 majority in the House.

Conservatives including Gaetz, Virginia Rep. Bob Good, Arizona Rep. Eli Crane, Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs and Colorado Rep. Lauren Boebert have described themselves as part of the "Never Kevin" camp. Despite the concessions McCarthy makes, no votes from all five of them would be enough to prevent McCarthy from reaching a simple majority, assuming all Democrats continue to back New York Democratic Rep. Hakeem Jeffries. 

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