Rep. Kevin McCarthy was elected House Speaker on Saturday morning after 15 rounds of voting and a number of concessions to conservative Republican House members who were hesitant to vote for McCarthy. McCarthy won the longest Speaker election in 164 years, but Freedom Caucus members obtained concessions they had initially sought.
As pundits discussed the deliberations among Republican members of the House, several said that the vote and negotiations for McCarthy’s support are just how a democratic election should go. Tucker Carlson, presenter of Fox News, stated that the media has exaggerated the electoral disaster for the Republican party.
“This is what democracy looks like when you get up close,” Carlson said. “I want one thing, you want another thing. We schedule a vote to see who gets it, or in this case 11 votes, but whatever. But how is that disaster? Well, it’s not a disaster. It’s how the system is supposed to work. But don’t tell the moron community that.”
Ben Domenech, a Fox News contributor and Meghan McCain’s husband, was asked his view on the race for House Speaker by Carlson, who was impatient with those who desired a more streamlined vote. He then displayed a montage of media people, including the Fox News contributor, remarking on the competition.
“The way that they’ve gone about trying to achieve these demands has resulted in essentially this terrorist standoff between them and the overwhelming majority of people in their conference,” the contributor said during an appearance on another show. “They’re so excitable,” the host said before responding to what Domenech said. “Then another one of the buffoons in the clip you just saw went further and called the whole thing terrorism, which is the remorseless use of violence against a civilian population to effect a political goal,” he said.
Conservative Brief observed that this was not the first instance of Fox News hosts clashing with those with whom they generally agree.
Wednesday, fellow Fox News anchor Sean Hannity battled with Representative Lauren Boebert over her opposition to Representative McCarthy.
Transcript from Mediaite.
“Let me turn the tables, congresswoman,” the host said. “Kevin McCarthy has 202–3 votes. Your side has 20. So, if I’m gonna use your words, and your methodology, and your math, isn’t it time for you to pack it in and your side to pack it in considering he has over 200 and you have 20?”
BOEBERT: Sean, I understand the frustration, I promise you, But he–
HANNITY: I’m not frustrated. You didn’t answer any question.
BOEBERT: And we are hearing–
HANNITY: I’m not frustrated.
BOEBERT: –from many people who are still voting with Kevin McCarthy–
HANNITY: You’re not answering my question.
BOEBERT: –who are very supportive of what we’re doing. And they’re cheering us on. So, there are more for us than there are against us. And they are waiting for Kevin to cave.
HANNITY: Ok, congresswoman–
BOEBERT: You know, the American people are certainly frustrated.
HANNITY: Congresswoman, I’m frustrated by you not answering a direct question. You said to President Trump, you said earlier today that President Trump needs to tell Kevin McCarthy, you don’t have the votes–
HANNITY: Can I finish?
BOEBERT: We need a candidate to elect as speaker of the House.
HANNITY: Can I finish? “You don’t have the votes and it’s time to withdraw.” He has 203. Your side has 20. Why is it time for him to withdraw and not you when he has so many more votes?
BOEBERT: Well, Sean, he needs 218 and he does not have 218.
HANNITY: Neither do you!
“Kevin McCarthy does not have 218 votes,” the representative said.
“And you have 20,” the host said. “I asked you a very specific question. If by Friday, you don’t have 30–”
“I will not withdraw,” she said.
“With all due respect,” the host said. “If you only have 30, to be clear, you will not withdraw, but you’re telling Kevin McCarthy and the 203 people that support him to withdraw because they don’t have 218. That’s what you’re saying?”
During an episode of the popular Fox News program “The Five,” Fox News presenter Jeanine Jeanine Pirro referred to the 20 GOP holdouts as “egomaniacs” who should “be quiet and just go along with the majority” in order for McCarthy to receive the 218 votes he needs to become speaker.
“They are making the Republicans look ridiculous. I like Kevin McCarthy … why wasn’t this done ahead of time? Why are we doing this in front of the public? We look like a bunch of fools and Lauren Boebert, all due respect, the woman barely won her race. They have no other alternative. They are egomaniacs who’ve got no answers and they ought to just be quiet and just go along with the majority at this point. If you don’t want to vote for a bill, don’t vote for it,” Pirro said. “I feel angry,” Pirro said.