Headline RoundupDecember 6th, 2023

Kevin McCarthy Retiring From House by End of December

Summary from the AllSides News Team

Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who served as House speaker for less than a year before his ouster in October, said he would retire from Congress at the end of the year. 

Key Quote: In a Wall Street Journal (Opinion rated Lean Right) op-ed, McCarthy said he would “serve America in new ways,” adding, “I will continue to recruit our country’s best and brightest to run for elected office. The Republican Party is expanding every day, and I am committed to lending my experience to support the next generation of leaders.”

For Context: McCarthy’s journey as speaker began and ended contentiously; in January, it took him 15 confirmation votes to overcome opposition from members of the hard-line conservative House Freedom Caucus. In October, many of those same members took issue with McCarthy’s acceptance of a bipartisan deal to avert a government shutdown, leading Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) to call a vote to oust McCarthy. With most Republicans backing McCarthy, it would have taken just a handful of Democrats to save his job. Such cross-partisan votes on speakers are rare, however, and House Democrats united against him, calling him “untrustworthy.” After weeks of division within the House HOP caucus, and multiple failed votes, Republicans united to elect Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA) as the next speaker.

How the Media Covered It: McCarthy’s announcement was the top story in most major news outlets on Wednesday afternoon. Coverage appeared fairly similar across the spectrum; HuffPost (Left bias) stood out by noting McCarthy’s response to the January 6 Capitol riot as his “most lasting legacy.”

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