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Kevin McCarthy Drops Out Of Race To Become Next House Speaker

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy leaves a meeting on Capitol Hill on Thursday ahead of a nomination vote to replace outgoing House Speaker John Boehner.

In a stunning turn of events, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., has withdrawn from the race to become the next speaker of the House.

McCarthy was the favorite ahead of Thursday's closed-door vote by House Republicans. He was in a three-way race for the top spot in the House with Reps. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, and Daniel Webster, R-Fla.

NPR's Jessica Taylor reports for It's All Politics on what happened during the caucus meeting:

"Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Fla., said the meeting opened, Republicans said the Pledge and then McCarthy stood up and took himself out of the race. The prohibitive favorite said he didn't want members to take arrows for voting for him and that he was taking himself out of contention.

"Speaker Boehner then immediately moved to adjourn the meeting. Rooney said there was 'total shock' and some members were audibly crying."

The House GOP tweeted that the election has been postponed.

For more, follow our colleagues at It's All Politics.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit

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