Shocking scenes as Republican held back in confrontation with Matt Gaetz during Speaker votes

A near brawl broke out between Republicans on the House floor late Friday night, as four days of frustration over Matt Gaetz’s refusal to support Kevin McCarthy’s shaky bid for Speaker boiled over.

Republican House member Mike Rogers had to be physically restrained after lashing out at Gaetz amid chaotic scenes on Capitol Hill.

Congressman Richard Hudson of North Carolina grabbed Rogers from behind around the face and shoulder and pulled the enraged congressman from Alabama away.

Richard Hudson, left, pulls back Rep. Mike Rogers as he lunges at Matt Gaetz during the 14th round of voting for speaker

(Associated Press)

The moment of high drama came after the House came together to hold its 14th vote at 10pm on Friday, with McCarthy confident he had secured enough votes to finally become speaker.

But in a dramatic twist, four House Republicans voted for alternative candidates, while Gaetz and fellow “Never Kevin” agitator Lauren Boebert voted in attendance.

With his hopes of being elected speaker hanging in the balance, Mr. McCarthy walked over to where Gaetz and Ms. Boebert were sitting and began protesting with them in full view of the C-Span cameras.

The House fell silent as the GOP leader appeared to plead with Gaetz to switch his vote to “McCarthy,” but the bombastic Florida lawmaker remained defiant.

Kevin McCarthy was seen begging Gaetz for his vote for speaker during chaotic scenes in the House


As a dejected Mr. McCarthy returned to his seat, Mr. Rogers angrily confronted Gaetz, with the pair nearly coming to blows.

“I won’t forget this!” Mr Rogers shouted.

Colleagues pull Rogers back as he remonstrates with Gaetz

(Getty Images)

Mr McCarthy then wandered back to try to calm the embattled congressman, before finally taking his seat.

Mr. Gaetz appeared to mock the confrontation by flexing his muscles, to the amusement of right-wing Republican Anna Paulina Luna.

When tempers finally cooled, a motion was made to adjourn the House until Monday morning.

Just as it appeared that the House presidential primary would drag on for several days, McCarthy allies managed to persuade the four holdouts—Eli Crane, Bob Good, Andy Biggs, and Matt Rosendale—to change their votes to present.

Gaetz bends his arm in front of a laughing Anna Paulina Luna after Rogers has passed away

(Getty Images)

Finally, McCarthy took the gavel after 1 a.m. ET Saturday morning, saying, “I hope one thing is clear. I never give up.”

He also thanked former President Donald Trump for an 11th-hour lobby phone call.

McCarthy said afterward that Gaetz had eventually “got everybody there to the point that nobody voted against me,” and persuaded some of his fellow colleagues to vote “present” as well.

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