Patrick McHenry Interim Speaker of the House Being Jerk to Nancy Pelosi

The Interim Speaker of the House Is Already Proving Himself To Be a Partisan Hack

In 1990 Bel Biv Devo warned everyone in the world to “never trust a big butt and a smile.” Needless to say, 1990 was a simpler time, and in 2023 we need stronger warnings, so it is in that spirit that I tell the world: Never trust a power-hungry grub in a bowtie.

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Naturally, I was alarmed when Patrick McHenry, a Congress member from North Carolina, was announced to be the interim Speaker of the House after Kevin McCarthy played himself, sorry, was removed via a vote yesterday. I mean, this man seems to have pulled a whole page from the Tucker Carlson “Dress Like Daddy’s Favorite Bestest Boy” playbook. Just look at him:

If you didn’t click into that social post, you’ll be missing out on the fact that McHenry is standing on top of a milk crate to appear taller. What was it that former President Teddy Roosevelt used to say? Speak softly and stand on a big crate? That doesn’t seem quite right, does it?

The man sure does love his bowties:

You may be wondering how this man became second in line to the presidency after VP Kamala Harris. Well, it’s a tale as old as time, really—if you’re a mediocre white guy who can’t help but fail upwards that is. It’s so dumb and shady that it very well might make you believe every hacky conspiracy theory out there on the internet. Per CBS News:

McHenry’s name was at the top of a secret list McCarthy submitted when he became speaker in January, and, according to House rules, McHenry became McCarthy’s successor Tuesday with an announcement from the House clerk. McHenry will serve as speaker pro tem until the House elects a permanent speaker. 

Yes, that’s right. The man who was so bad at his job that is the first person ever to be removed from said job (Kevin McCarthy, fun reminder for you) was inexplicably allowed to pick his successor without a vote because the American political system is bulls**** and you will never be able to convince me otherwise.

This also goes to show you how much Kevin McCarthy has drunk the MAGA cult juice because I am a petty enough person that if I thought there was even an inkling I would be removed from that position, I would have only listed one name as my successor: Nancy Pelosi. The thought process being that if I wasn’t good enough to lead, then I’d pick the person they hated most as leader just to give a finger to everyone on my way out the door. That, obviously, didn’t happen.

Instead, we get this Turd Ferguson. Who has views just as horrible as you would expect from a man who wears bow ties and is respected by Kevin McCarthy:

Of course he’s a bigot. Of course he has horrible views on abortion. This is America in 2023, and we’re firmly in our Empire Strikes Back era, where the dark side keeps getting win after win. (Although some would argue America has always been in its Empire Strikes Back era, and, well, they’re not really wrong, are they?)

So what’s an unelected leader to do when he comes into his first real brush with power? Go after the woman who was fairly elected into the position before he tripped into it, obviously. That’s right. McHenry decided to evict Pelosi from leadership offices, going against tradition. Per CNN:

An email sent from McHenry’s office to Pelosi’s office just after 6 p.m. Tuesday evening that was viewed by CNN, stated, “Going to reassign h-132 for speaker office use. Please vacate the space tomorrow.”

Pelosi said in a statement that she was not in Washington, DC, to immediately move her belongings.

Keep in mind Pelosi is not in D.C. right now because her friend, former Senator Dianne Feinstein died last week, and she’s in California mourning her loss. Surely a man who has an entire section on his Congressional website devoted to “the sanctity of human life” would have compassion, right?! Wrong! Just a fun reminder about the anti-choice faction that it’s never about human life, and always about human control.

Also, to put this into perspective, this was one of the first things McHenry did, which means he, or one of the worms around him, must have been fixated on the fact Pelosi still kept offices in the speakership bloc of offices. While this is such an annoying dumb thing to do, I hope somewhere Pelosi has a sick sense of satisfaction that even though she is no longer in a leadership position for the Democrats, she’s still getting under the skin of lesser, weaker men.

McHenry’s demand goes against tradition, but remember, tradition only matters to Republicans when they’re using it to oppress people who just want the same rights and privileges that they already enjoy. Per the above source:

Pelosi added in her statement that the “eviction is a sharp departure from tradition,” saying: “As Speaker, I gave former Speaker Hastert a significantly larger suite of offices for as long as he wished.”

“Office space doesn’t matter to me, but it seems to be important to them,” she said. “Now that the new Republican Leadership has settled this important matter, let’s hope they get to work on what’s truly important for the American people.”

Former Speaker Hastert is of course a reference to convicted felon and sex offender Dennis Hastert because the Republicans only send their best and brightest to the top positions.

So here’s the good news: Patrick McHenry won’t be the interim Speaker for long, because the worst people for the job are enthusiastically throwing their hoods into the ring: Jim Jordan and Steve Scalise. Yes, that Jim Jordan who covered up sexual abuse at Ohio State University and refused to testify what he knew about the Jan 6 Insurrection and that Steve Scalise who was so bad at his job as Majority Whip that Kevin McCarthy was ousted from his speakership position. (As a reminder, a huge part of a Whip’s job is to get votes for party leadership, something Scalise certainly did not do, and you will never convince me he’s smart enough to play the long game to go after the Speakership position for himself.)

Look, if at first, you don’t succeed, just move on to the next position higher up if you’re a middle-aged white guy in the GOP. That, my friends, is the real American way.

(Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

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Kate Hudson
Kate Hudson (no, not that one) has been writing about pop culture and reality TV in particular for six years, and is a Contributing Writer at The Mary Sue. With a deep and unwavering love of Twilight and Con Air, she absolutely understands her taste in pop culture is both wonderful and terrible at the same time. She is the co-host of the popular Bravo trivia podcast Bravo Replay, and her favorite Bravolebrity is Kate Chastain, and not because they have the same first name, but it helps.