The start of the 118th Congress was rockier than many expected with a 15-ballot race that led to Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., being elected as House speaker. As a result of the lack of results from the ballot, Congress had to be delayed as Representatives could not be sworn in until a Speaker was selected. No legislation or services to constituents could be provided during the chaotic stalemate of the Speakership fight.
McCarthy managed to win the Speakership after making a number of concessions that helped him gain the support of the 20 Republican members who had not voted for him in the previous ballots.
According to a Rasmussen Report, 39 percent of voters believed that McCarthy was more to blame for the stalemate in Congress. Similarly, another 39 percent of respondents said that the blame was with McCarthy’s GOP opponents, while 22 percent said they were uncertain of who was more to blame for the situation.
The Rasmussen Poll also showed that around 65 percent of likely voters believed the delay in Congress to be a serious problem. Specifically, 33 percent was a “very serious problem.” On the other side, around 32 percent said that the delay did not cause as serious of a problem while 16 percent said that it did not cause any issues at all.
Across partisan lines, 42 percent of Republicans, 35 percent of Democrats, and 40 percent of unaffiliated voters thought that McCarthy was more responsible for the delay in the Speakership vote. While 41 percent of Republicans, 39 percent of Democrats, and 36 percent of unaffiliated voters thought his opponents were more to blame.