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History was made this week, and I share some thoughts.
Happy Friday, Okay History friends!
I know I promised another Amendment ranking today, but I can’t ignore the significant historical event that took place in my hometown on Tuesday.
California House Representative Kevin McCarthy, the 55th Speaker of the House, was voted out and removed from office. It is the first time in our history that the House voted to remove the Speaker from their position. The vote was 216-210. It fell mostly along party lines, but a few Republicans voted with all Democrats on the measure.
Which leads us to this week’s Ask Me Anything segment, where I take the collective group question of:
What in the heck?
What in the heck indeed. It’s a great question, everyone. Thank you for thinking of it!
Let’s dive in.
It wasn’t easy for Kevin to become Speaker, despite having been in Congress since 2007, steadily rising in the ranks of Republican leadership, including being the minority leader of the Republican Conference for many years. It took 15 rounds of votes to finally elect him Speaker, and he made so many deals with so many different fractions of his conference he must have hired a staff member just to run the Excel spreadsheet to keep them all straight.
His struggles to overcome and gain the speakership go way back. As a young person, he once applied for an internship with his Congressional representative, only to be rejected. Despite this initial setback, McCarthy was elected to the seat. McCarthy is a prime example of American resilience.
Resilience is another way to describe a small group of Republicans who grew up eating paint chips and licking flagpoles. Because the United States has a habit of being stupid when voting people into office, eight congressional Republicans failed forward, took seats, and used their power to remove McCarthy. They took a chance that the minority party, the Democrats, would vote alongside them.
And, oh boy, did they!
It’s easy to see why the Democrats wouldn’t throw a lifeline to Kevin. He’s a Trump loyalist who, when the former president inspired the insurrection at the Capitol on January 6, 2021, initially condemned the action but flipped his stance and thought it was okay. Later that year, as minority leader, he pulled members of his conference off the committee charged with the investigation.
Once his party took power a year later, McCarthy continued to do many things you would expect a Trump loyalist to do. He led a House impeachment inquiry on President Biden, which has produced less value so far than this newsletter – which is saying something. He forced President Biden to negotiate over the debt ceiling, and in his final act, tried to force the federal government to shut down and lay the blame at the feet of Democrats with a last-minute bill he must have been surprised they agreed to.
This act motivated walking Pez Dispenser, Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz, to move to oust McCarthy because anyone who deals with Democrats is not okay.
McCarthy’s resiliency ran out when he announced he wouldn’t seek the Speaker position and instead would become the valet at the Capitol Hill Club.
At least he gets to steer something now.
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Patrick McHenry of North Carolina was named temporary Speaker immediately after Kevin was voted off the island. One of his first acts was to oust former Speaker Nancy Pelosi and top Democratic Steny Hoyer of Maryland from their hideaway offices deep in the Capitol. I only knew of the offices' existence because every Cooter who drove his Ford 150 into Washington two years ago broke into their offices and acted like tough, good ole boys.
You have to watch McHenry bang the gavel. He hits it so hard you think his bow tie would fly off. Way to show everyone what a child you are, Patrick - acting like you were told to go to bed and couldn’t play Call of Duty.
McCarthy. McHenry. McSilly.
Now, the exciting part is to see who will get elected Speaker. We know Democrats will continue to vote for their leader, Hakeem Jeffries of New York, then grab some popcorn to watch Real Wives of the Capitol duke it out.
In a shoutout to the Framers, they did not spell out that the Speaker has to be a standing member of Congress to hold the position. It could be anybody. While leading candidates are Jim Jordan of Ohio and Scott Scalise of Louisiana, one could only hope that the Republicans think outside the box and come up with someone who will shake things up.
I have some ideas. And I’ve ranked the top five.
5. Taylor Swift
Trust in the federal government is at an all-time low. Do you know who people trust? TSwift. Can you imagine the uptick in viewership at CSPAN if Taylor assumes the gavel? Woe to the party that crosses her and her legion of cult members.
Now we got problems
And I don't think we can solve 'em
4. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson
Nothing would unite the House than a guy who can collectively bench-press all of them together. With biceps as big as pythons and charisma that would shame any media seeker member, The Rock becoming the Speaker would be an epic event.
Can you Smell What the Speaker is Cooking?
3. Donald Trump
The King of Chaos would feel right at home as Speaker. He could return to his roots as a bad television reality star and fire people out of the chamber. Image the Capitol burning to the ground and Speaker Two Scoops proclaiming he was the best Speaker ever.
Even though he recently endorsed Jordan for the gig, a man he gave the Medal of Honor to weeks after the insurrection, if The Donald thinks for a moment that Jim would upstage him, he could toss him aside like a bag of McDonald's.
I would be the best Speaker. No other Speaker would be as great as me. So many people want me to be Speaker. I could be Speaker and President and murder someone on 5th Avenue in broad daylight, and no one would care.
2. Anna Paulina Luna
Luna is a Republican Congresswoman from Florida and the youngest member of the Conference at 33. She looks a lot like Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, which would confuse the libs into thinking that AOC somehow took over and, for some reason, is now pushing for a federal abortion ban. She’s here because, as the youngest in my family’s conference, I know how the youngest can get stuff done.
Like hi. Like, I’m not AOC but don’t tell the libs because owning them is so fetch.
1. Arnold Schwarzenegger
Did you know the Terminator and former California governor is the most popular Republican?
What the heck, right?
Just imagine the drama with Arnold in charge and taking attention away from Trump. At the end of each session, when Conan, the Speaker, bangs the gavel and breaks it, he delivers the line:
I’ll be back.
Lots of options here. What do you think? Do you like my suggestions for the next Speaker? Who would you like to see?
What a week we have had. Embrace this moment in history. Remember where you were when you learned the news. I was on the metro train headed to Maryland. I laughed when I read the news on my phone. It was pretty okay.
I will say this. It’s sad to see such white-on-white crime, and if only leaders in the white community would step up and demand some accountability, can we heal and move forward and never let this happen again. I will do my part.
I’ll be back on Monday, where I always fulfill my promises unless something historic happens and I am forced to Speak Out!
Until then, have a great weekend.