US House approves rules package after dysfunctional opening week - Washington News
by IANS | Updated Jan 10, 2023
The package, which will govern how the House led by Republicans operates for the next two years, was passed in a 220-213 vote on Monday, mainly along party lines, reports Xinhua news agency.
Meanwhile, Texas Republican Tony Gonzales joined all the Democrats in voting against the measure.
McCarthy -- whose bid to take the gavel last week paralysed the lower chamber for days -- said on Monday evening that "Congress has been broken for a long time".
He also signed off on a pledge that the Republican-led House would pair any debt ceiling increase to spending cuts and would approve a budget capping discretionary spending at fiscal 2022 levels -- which, if implemented, would roll back the fiscal 2023 spending increase for both defense and non-defence spending from last month's $1.7 trillion omnibus package.
During last week's historical political stalemate, the California Republican had made multiple concessions to House Republican hardliners in order to rise to the post, including a measure to allow a single member to call for a vote to remove the speaker.
Republicans flipped the House in the 2022 midterm elections while Democrats held onto their majority in the Senate.
The new, divided Congress convened early last week, but McCarthy didn't secure enough votes to become House speaker until the 15th ballot due to intra-party division and partisanship.
The longest House speaker election contest in 164 years prevented Congress from being fully operational.
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