Representative Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., Requisitioned the House floor for more than eight hours – until Friday morning – prompting Democrats to postpone voting on President Biden’s spending bill until at least later Friday morning.
At 5 a.m., McCarthy looked no worse for wear and continued to tell stories about when he won $ 5,000 in the lotto as a young man and the issues facing the country including l inflation, migration and the lack of bipartisanship on Capitol Hill.
At one point, the Minority Leader asked how President Biden could be trusted with $ 5,000 billion after the debacle in Afghanistan.
The speech was not without lightness. McCarthy said Congress should organize neighborhood parties to bridge the gap between Democrats and Republicans. He even mentioned a potluck, but said it might be difficult to achieve due to inflation. The line made the tired members laugh who were still there around 4.30am
His speech was official longer than House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s 2018 marathon in defense of the DREAMers, which lasted eight hours and seven minutes. The speech ended around 5:10 a.m.
Rep. Steny Hoyer, the Democratic majority leader, released a statement Friday morning saying members were “advised that there were no more votes in the House tonight” and that many had left. McCarthy said it was unfortunate they did not stay to debate and learn a little more about the bill and its impact on working class Americans.
The House will reconvene at 8 a.m. ET and will likely vote on the bill. Most Democrats left the chamber after midnight with McCarthy still speaking, The Associated Press reported.
House approval was still awaited on a vote close to the party line. That would send the measure to a Senate where the cost-cutting demands of moderate Senator Joe Manchin, DW.Va., and the strict rules of that chamber seemed certain to force significant changes. This will cause further disputes between the party’s centrists and the moderates which will likely take weeks to resolve. –AP contributed