Articles written by Lisa Mascaro & Farnoush Amiri


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  • House Republicans drop Jim Jordan as their nominee for speaker, stumbling back to square one

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Oct 20, 2023

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans abruptly dropped Rep. Jim Jordan on Friday as their nominee for House speaker, making the decision during a closed-door session after the hard-edged ally of Donald Trump failed badly on a third ballot for the gavel. The outcome left Republicans dejected, frustrated and sinking deeper into turmoil, another week without a House speaker bordering on a full-blown crisis. House Republicans have no realistic or working plan to unite the fractured GOP majority, elect a new speaker and return to the work of Congress t...

  • With House Republicans in turmoil, colleagues implore GOP holdouts not to shut down government

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Sep 24, 2023

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Working furiously to take control of a House in disarray, allies of Speaker Kevin McCarthy implored their Republican colleagues Saturday to drop their hardline tactics and work together to approve a conservative spending plan to prevent a federal shutdown. In public overtures and private calls, Republican lieutenants of the embattled speaker pleaded with a handful of right-flank holdouts to resist further disruptions that have ground the House to a halt and back McCarthy's latest plan to keep government open before next w...

  • McCarthy fails for 3rd long day in GOP House speaker fight

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Jan 6, 2023

    WASHINGTON (AP) — For a long and frustrating third day, divided Republicans left the speaker's chair of the U.S. House sitting empty Thursday, as party leader Kevin McCarthy failed and failed again in an excruciating string of ballots to win enough GOP votes to seize the chamber's gavel. Pressure was building as McCarthy lost a seventh, eighth and historic ninth round of voting, tying the number it took the last time this happened, 100 years ago, in a prolonged fight to choose a speaker in a disputed election. With his supporters and foes l...

  • McCarthy makes big gains for speaker, but he's still short

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Jan 6, 2023

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican leader Kevin McCarthy flipped 15 colleagues to supporters in dramatic votes for House speaker on Friday, making extraordinary gains on the fourth day and the 12th and 13th ballots of a historic standoff that has tested American democracy and the GOP majority's ability to govern. The switched votes from conservative holdouts, including the chairman of the chamber's Freedom Caucus, put McCarthy closer to seizing the gavel for the new Congress — but not yet able. Republicans voted to adjourn until 10 p.m. to try aga...

  • McCarthy fails in marathon votes for speaker, House adjourns

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Jan 4, 2023

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Unable to elect Republican leader Kevin McCarthy as the new House speaker Tuesday, the Republicans adjourned for the day in disarray as the party tries to regroup from his a historic defeat after a long, messy start for the new Congress. The surprise move end to Day One shows there is no easy way out for McCarthy whose effort to claim the gavel collapsed to opposition from conservatives. Needing 218 votes in the full House, McCarthy got just 203 in two rounds — less even than Democrat Hakeem Jeffries in the GOP-controlled cha...

  • McCarthy wins nomination for House speaker, but grind ahead

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Nov 16, 2022

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican leader Kevin McCarthy won the nomination Tuesday for House speaker, clearing a first step with majority support from his colleagues, but he now faces a weeks-long slog to quell right-flank objections before a final vote in the new year. McCarthy has led House Republicans this far, and with the party now on the cusp of majority control, he has a chance to seize the gavel from Nancy Pelosi if Democrats are defeated. The GOP leader pushed through the internal party election on a 188-31 vote, with ballots cast by new an...

  • McCarthy, Trump have 'positive' call despite Jan. 6 audio

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Apr 22, 2022

    WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy had a "positive" call with Donald Trump and appeared to be suffering little political blowback Friday from the release of audio in which he suggested the president should resign shortly after the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol insurrection. McCarthy worked swiftly to shore up support among Republicans, calling and texting many lawmakers about his conversation with Trump as he rushed to contain the fallout. In the audio, first posted Thursday by The New York Times and aired on Rachel Maddow's M...

  • Sen. Luján to be out at least 4 weeks, Biden agenda at risk

    LISA MASCARO and FARNOUSH AMIRI|Feb 2, 2022

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Democrats' fragile hold on the Senate majority became vividly apparent Wednesday with the sudden illness of New Mexico Sen. Ben Ray Luján, who won't be back to work for at least four weeks, throwing President Joe Biden's Supreme Court pick and lagging legislative agenda in doubt. The 49-year-old Democrat remained hospitalized after suffering a stroke and is expected to make a full recovery. But Senate colleagues were blindsided by the news — even top-ranking leaders were reportedly unaware that Luján fell ill last Thurs...