Auchincloss reflects on 'tense' few days ahead of House speaker vote
FILE - House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., stands with Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., left, and other Republicans before an address by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in the House chamber, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022. The new 118th Congress, with Republicans in control of the House, begins Jan. 3, 2023, but the first task for the GOP is electing a new speaker and whether House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., can overcome opposition from conservatives in his own ranks to get the job. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Rep. Jake Auchincloss, who represents part of Bristol County, says he is ready for his second term but feels "disheartened" by how things started out this time around.

"It's an honor to represent the Massachusetts 4th, the privilege in a lifetime,” Auchincloss told NBC 10 News.

NBC 10's Katie Benoit speaks with Rep. Jake Auchincloss, who says he is ready for his second term, but feels "disheartened" by how things started out this time around. (WJAR)

After a historic 15 rounds of voting and days of negotiations, Republican Representative Kevin McCarthy of California was sworn in as House speaker early Saturday morning.

Auchincloss said it was a tense few days at the House Chamber.

He said national security could have been at risk if it went on any longer.

When asked if it was frustrating to be sworn in for so long, Auchincloss said, “Monumentally so.”

"The week ended with a near fist fight between a moderate republican and an extreme right republican, so I think that just about sums it up,” Auchincloss said. “The GOP is at war with itself.”

Rep. Jake Auchincloss speaks with NBC 10's Katie Benoit on the few "tense" says at the House Chamber leading up to the speaker vote, Saturday, Jan. 7, 2023. (WJAR)

To seal the speakership, McCarthy worked to make changes to house rules, watering down the speaker's power, allowing one member to call for a vote to oust McCarthy from his seat.

Auchincloss is critical of the move.

"Exacting rule changes that empower the most extreme elements of his conference, it is a poor recipe for an effective 118th Congress,” he said.

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