Even though he has little chance of maintaining his leadership position without their support, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced on Tuesday that he will not attempt to negotiate a deal with Democrats to prevent a hard-right movement to remove him.
McCarthy claimed that Democrats “haven’t asked for anything” and that “and I’m not going to provide anything.”
By requesting that the House vote to “table” Mr. Gaetz’s motion, he might attempt to thwart the Florida representative Matt Gaetz’s campaign to have him removed from office as early as Tuesday afternoon.
The speaker’s tiny majority, however, and the sizeable number of right-wing rebels who urge his removal make it unlikely that he will survive a vote to retain his position, which necessitates a majority, without at least some backing from Democrats.
On Tuesday morning, House Democrats were scheduled to gather to discuss whether to support Mr. McCarthy.
Depending on when Mr. McCarthy decides to force a vote, the events that will take place on Tuesday or Wednesday have only happened once before in the House of Representatives, in 1920.
They are the result of Mr. McCarthy’s months-long power struggle with a group of far-right lawmakers who attempted to obstruct his election as speaker in January and have plagued him ever since by obstructing his attempts to keep the government funded and the country from defaulting on its debt.