Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., is the new temporary leader of the House of Representatives after former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy was removed from his post Tuesday afternoon in a nail-biting vote.
House rules dictated McCarthy, upon his election as speaker in January, provide a secret list of members to succeed him as speaker pro tempore should the office be vacated as it was with his removal. It was revealed following the vote to oust McCarthy that McHenry was at the top of the list.
McHenry, a former media consultant and political operative, was first elected to the House to represent North Carolina’s 10th Congressional District in 2004. He was selected as the House Republican chief deputy whip in 2015, and served in the role until 2019. He was selected as chair of the House Financial Services Committee in January.
Now that he is speaker pro tempore, he has the powers of the House speaker in order to guide the chamber in its continued operation until a new speaker is elected.
The 216-210 vote to remove McCarthy came about after Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., introduced a motion to vacate Monday evening after threatening to do so amid clashes between different factions of the Republican Party over details of a deal averting a government shutdown.
Eight Republicans, including Gaetz, joined all Democrats in voting against McCarthy’s continued speakership.
It’s unclear in which direction House Republicans intend to go as the process of selecting a new speaker moves forward, but McCarthy has said he intends to serve in the role.
This is a developing story. Check back here for updates.