Katie Britt is now officially Alabama's newest U.S. Senator, but U.S. Rep.-elect Dale Strong (R-Huntsville) will have to wait at least one more day to be sworn in as the House of Representatives continues its search for a Speaker.
On Tuesday, the House became deadlocked after three failed ballot attempts for the Speaker position and chose to adjourn until noon Wednesday. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), though considered the front-runner, faced an uphill battle from several stalwart conservatives who questioned his loyalties.
By the final round, McCarthy received 202 votes, Democratic Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (New York) received 212 and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) received 20. The winner will need 218 votes to become Speaker.
All the Alabama Republicans, including U.S. Rep. Barry Moore (R-Enterprise), who was initially uncertain, backed McCarthy on all three ballots. U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Saks) even tried to help whip votes for McCarthy by threatening to deny committee appointments to anyone voting against him.
After the House adjourned, Strong issued a message to his constituents reiterating his goals once in office and reminding them that new House members could not be sworn in until a Speaker is chosen, per the U.S. Constitution.
"I am honored to step into this new role, serving North Alabamians. This is a pivotal time in history where we can change the United States of America and Alabama for the better," he said. "It is my goal to focus on the issues that matter most to North Alabama: energy and border security, reducing inflation, and protecting the American people through a strong national defense."
This is the first time in 100 years the House has failed to elect a Speaker at the start of a new session.
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