Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy Leaving House End Of Year

First, he was ousted as speaker of the House. Now, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) will be leaving Congress altogether.

Only two months following his ouster as speaker, McCarthy announced Wednesday that he would be resigning from Congress, and will be leaving at the end of 2023.

McCarthy has experienced quite the fall from grace in less than a year. In January, he ascended to the role of speaker, but only after 15 rounds of voting. Then, in October, he was removed from his post after a member of his own party, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) initiated a motion to vacate.

Eight House Republicans, along with all Democrats, voted to remove McCarthy from his post, making him the only speaker in U.S. history to be voted out.

Ironically, the reason why Gaetz was able to introduce the motion to vacate in the first place is due to the concessions he and his group of hardline Republicans gained during negotiations that allowed McCarthy to capture the gavel.

One of the concessions was that even a single House member could introduce a motion to vacate the speakership.

For the last two months, speculation roamed about what the future would hold for McCarthy — whether he’d run for re-election, serve out the remainder of his current term through January 2025, or resign.

On Wednesday, he made his intentions known through a Wall Street Journal op-ed.

“No matter the odds, or personal cost, we did the right thing,” he wrote. “It is in this spirit that I have decided to depart the House at the end of this year to serve America in new ways.”

McCarthy’s resignation caps a tumultuous turn in his relationship with many other Republicans in the House, especially those who consider themselves ardent supporters of former President Donald Trump.

With McCarthy’s resignation — and the expulsion of Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) — the GOP’s already razor-thin margin will become even smaller, even if it ends up being temporary.

Republicans can now only afford to lose three votes before they’re at risk of not being able to achieve a simple majority for any bill in the House.