Former President Donald Trump added to Friday night’s drama on the House floor by calling two Republican lawmakers who were refusing to back eventual House Speaker Rep. Kevin McCarthy during the 14th round of voting, according to reports.
Trump phoned Reps. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) and Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) — former supporters of the 45th president — to urge them to back McCarthy for the gavel after four days of grueling negotiations, Politico reported.
During the 14th ballot, Gaetz ultimately voted “present,” which, in part, derailed McCarthy’s speakership bid that round.
Biggs voted for Rep. Jim Jordan in the 14th round.
The former president also apparently called conservative firebrand Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green, (R-Ga.), who is supporting McCarthy.
She was seen offering her phone, with who was believed to be Trump on line, to another McCarthy holdout, Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-Mont.), who waved the phone away, a photo from White House journalist Al Drago shows.
Greene said earlier this week she was “furious” with her “friends” in the conservative House Freedom Caucus for pressing McCarthy for committee seats before the House votes on the California Republican’s bid to become speaker.
McCarthy failed on the 14th ballot by just one vote Friday night. Along with Gaetz and Biggs, Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Bob Good of Virginia, Matt Rosendale of Montana and Rep.-elect Eli Crane of Arizona, remained opposed to McCarthy in the second-to-last ballot.
But McCarthy finally secured the House speakership in the 15th round.
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