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HomeEntertainmentLate-night shows revel in House drama: ‘I love the McCarthy hearings’

Late-night shows revel in House drama: ‘I love the McCarthy hearings’

Late-night show hosts reacted to the news that Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) had been ousted as House speaker with a hefty dose of disbelief and jokes about the divided Republican Party.

“I’m sure this won’t be taken out of context when I say: I love the McCarthy hearings,” CBS host Stephen Colbert quipped on Tuesday, likening the drama to Republican Sen. Joseph McCarthy’s notorious 1950s hearings that dominated national television. In 1954, the Senate voted to condemn McCarthy, who baselessly alleged that hundreds of communists had infiltrated the highest levels of government.

The current congressman McCarthy dramatically lost the House speakership Tuesday after failing to withstand a rebellion among hard-right Republicans — a first in U.S. history.

“Now this has never happened before in the 247 years of our Republic. So, Kevin, congratulations, you made history,” Colbert continued. “I’m sorry. Wait, wait. I’m sorry. I misread that. You are history.”

McCarthy later said he would not be running again, sparking an intraparty battle for the role that’s second in line to the presidency.

“Kevin McCarthy says he will not run for speaker again, which surprised a lot of people, including me,” Jimmy Kimmel said. “I mean, he’s a Republican. You lose a vote, you just say you won the vote. You get with the program, man.”

Dramatic moments from McCarthy’s ouster

The flood of McCarthy jokes came a day after late-night shows returned following a five-month hiatus because of the Hollywood writers strike.

The comedians also took aim at McCarthy’s strained path to being elected as the nation’s 55th speaker early this year, claiming the gavel after days of defeats and concessions.

“Back in January, Congress had to vote a record 15 times for McCarthy to get the speaker’s job,” Colbert said. “But to remove him, just one. That’s progress, Kev! Feel good about that.”

McCarthy lost his House speaker job. How it happened, and what’s next.

Eight Republicans voted to boot McCarthy, and Democrats did not provide any votes to save him; 208 supported the ouster.

“This was an unlikely and historic team-up between far-right Republicans and Democrats,” Kimmel said. “Do you know how much you have to suck to get A.O.C. and Matt Gaetz on the same side of something?” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, a force on the Democratic Party’s left wing, voted to remove McCarthy along with hard-right provocateur Gaetz (R-Fla.), who filed the motion.

See which House members voted to oust McCarthy as speaker

Outside the comedy, hosts of “The Five” talk show on Fox News expressed concern about what happens next.

Host Jeanine Pirro said she was “furious” that the nation was without a speaker and that there doesn’t appear to be anyone willing or able to take on the role.

“Now what we’ve got is total chaos when the Republicans are playing out their infighting on national television in a historic way instead of fighting Joe Biden’s policies,” she said.

Amber Phillips, Marianna Sotomayor, Leigh Ann Caldwell, Amy B Wang, Paul Kane and Mariana Alfaro contributed to this report.

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