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Amid House vote turmoil, Utah leaders back McCarthy as Speaker

Kevin McCarthy
Posted at 11:58 AM, Jan 04, 2023

WASHINGTON — As Republican leader Kevin McCarthy continues to fight to be voted the next Speaker of the House, three Utah congressmen appear united in support of their embattled colleague.

On Wednesday afternoon, McCarthy lost a sixth vote for Speaker as a small group of Republicans continued to block his return to the top post in the House.

Before the new round of voting took place, Rep. Burgess Owens tweeted his anger at those members of his own party holding back McCarthy from the leadership position.

"When members are holding votes in exchange for committee positions, you see this is not about principle but personal enrichment. We DON’T sell gavels for votes. Don’t be fooled by 20 second sound bites. Over 91% of us stand behind [McCarthy] for a reason. Let’s get to work," wrote Owens.

Saying "Republicans, for better or worse, notoriously, don't always fall in line," Rep. Blake Moore echoed Owens' statement while appearing on CNN on Tuesday evening.

"We have an agenda and we want to implement that agenda," Moore said. "And we can either be the conference that comes together to do that, or we can let just a select few keep us from being able to do that."

The small group of far-right Republicans holding up McCarthy don't believe he is conservative enough to battle Democrats, according to the Associated Press. Even a plea from former President Donald Trump to unite behind McCarthy has fallen upon deaf ears and failed to sway opposition to change their positions.

Rep. Chris Stewart also took to social media Tuesday night to call out his fellow Republicans who are keeping McCarthy from the Speaker position.

"A small group of egotistical members are currently holding up the House Speaker vote. But they have no candidate. They have no consensus. And they have no goal. Don't buy their empty rhetoric about 'draining the swamp.'

"They just want fifteen minutes of fame."