House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) canceled votes for the rest of the week and sent lawmakers home for the weekend, after a revolt by 11 members of the House Freedom Caucus banded together to grind proceedings to a halt in protest of the speaker caving to Democrats during last week's compromise to raise the debt ceiling.
"There's a little chaos going on," McCarthy told reporters Wednesday evening at the Capitol, shortly after discussions with the hard-liners went nowhere.
"This is the difficulty," said McCarthy, adding "Some of these members don't know what to ask for."
Tuesday marked the first time in more than two decades that a speaker had been unable to muster the votes for a procedural step to begin debate on a bill on the House floor, according to C-Span. With the 11 GOP defections, and Democrats also voting against the procedural measure to advance bills, it failed on a 206-220 vote.
McCarthy mostly projected his customary optimism, predicting that the two sides would resolve their differences soon. Yet he showed flashes of frustration during the day and admitted the protest took him by surprise. -Bloomberg
"I feel blindsided," McCarthy told reporters, apparently oblivious to the fact that breaking the very promises that got him elected Speaker might have consequences.
"Five people can create problems," he continued. "You're not going to get 100% of what you want — so you can't take hostages."
The Epoch Times notes the GOP hardliners' grievances;
The conservative group's grievances centered around what they claim are forceful tactics by the GOP leadership team and a failure to honor agreements made with them during McCarthy's election as speaker.