- Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene forwarded a phone call with Donald Trump to a Republican rebel amid the House Speaker crisis.
- Kevin McCarthy was elected speaker of the House of Representatives early Saturday morning, ending days of chaos.
- Reports say Trump made several calls to McCarthy’s GOP opponents to help secure his victory.
In a dramatic moment caught on camera, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene passed a phone with Donald Trump on the line to a rebel against Kevin McCarthy on the House floor amid a speaker crisis Friday night.
Greene posted the photo on Twitter himself trying to hand his phone to fellow GOP Matt Rosendale with the former president’s initials “DT” appearing on the screen.
In the picture, Rosendale, who voted against McCarthy, appears to turn to the Georgia congresswoman.
Greene later confirmed to reporters that she was on the phone with her “favorite president,” but declined to elaborate on what he said.
McCarthy was finally elected Speaker of the House of Representatives in the early hours of Saturday morning, ending days of chaos and uncertainty.
The presidential election process, which spanned five days and 15 ballots, was disrupted by a group of hard-line conservatives who repeatedly voted against McCarthy.
The former president, who supported McCarthy’s bid for speaker, reportedly made a series of timely calls to some GOP members who opposed him.
—Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) January 7, 2023
The New York Times reported that Trump called Rep. Matt Gaetz, who led the anti-McCarthy faction, after his “present” vote on the 14th ballot cost McCarthy the victory.
The paper noted that Trump’s call may have influenced Gaetz to agree to proceed with another round of voting, which McCarthy ultimately won.
CNN also reported that Trump called Rep. Andy Biggs, who then voted “present” on the 15th ballot instead of voting against McCarthy.
The last-ditch pushback by Republicans by moving to “present voting” lowered the threshold of votes needed to win and allowed McCarthy to secure the seat.
While he was talking to journalists after the suspension of the work of the House, McCarthy thanked Trump for his role in securing his victory.
“I don’t think anyone should doubt his influence. He’s been with me from the beginning,” McCarthy said.
He added that the former president was “all in” and would “call me and call others” while “helping get those final votes.”
McCarthy had to make a series of concessions to the conservative bloc of opponents, including spending cuts and limiting his leadership.
Trump posted a message of support for McCarthy on Truth Social shortly after the final vote.
“The process of choosing a “Speaker”, as crazy as it may seem, made everything much bigger and more important than if it were done in a more conventional way. Congratulations to Kevin McCarthy and our GREAT Republican Party!” Trump wrote.