ARIZONA NEWS

Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona loses his bid to become House speaker

Nov 15, 2022, 2:09 PM | Updated: 2:10 pm

U.S. Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona lost his bid to be nominated as House speaker by his Republican colleagues on Tuesday.

Instead, current Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy was tabbed to take the gavel from Speaker Nancy Pelosi in January, assuming the GOP wins control of the chamber.

Republicans headed into the day one seat short of the 218 needed to regain control of the House, although the majority will be smaller than the party was hoping heading into the elections.

Biggs, who just won his fourth term representing the East Valley, noted the election shortfall when he announced his challenge Tuesday morning.

“The promised red wave turned into a loss of the United States Senate, a razor-thin majority in the House of Representatives, and upset losses of premiere political candidates,” Biggs, former chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, said in a statement.

“My bid to run for speaker is about changing the paradigm and the status quo.”

Biggs said he didn’t think McCarthy had enough votes, but that wasn’t the case Tuesday.

The vote favored the Californian 188-31, with ballots cast by newly elected and returning GOP lawmakers, and some whose races have not yet been called.

The formal vote for House speaker will come when the new Congress convenes in January, and McCarthy will need to shore up support from no fewer than 218 lawmakers with potentially just a few votes to spare.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona loses his bid to become House speaker