Kevin McCarthy calls out Matt Gaetz for challenging his speaker bid | USA TODAY #Shorts

Rep. Kevin McCarthy is facing challenges from other Republicans in his bid to be elected speaker of the House.

RELATED: Rep. Kevin McCarthy: 'accountability' coming before House speaker vote https://bit.ly/3Ch0FpW

Opponents to Rep. Kevin McCarthy as a possible House speaker appear to be sticking to their efforts to deny him the role, as the Republican infighting casts a shadow over the Congressional term that kicks off on Tuesday with a new Republican majority.

Nor is that the only possible source of conflict, with GOP Rep.-elect George Santos of New York under investigation on multiple fronts after admitting to lies about everything from his education to his ancestry to his professional background. The first official act of the House – before new members are sworn in – will be to select the speaker. McCarthy, R-Calif., is vying to succeed Democratic Rep. Nancy Pelosi.

But a closely divided House (222 Republicans/212 Democrats, with one vacancy) means opposition from a small faction of hardline Republicans could sink his ascension. Even delaying an ascension until a second ballot would leave McCarthy vulnerable to the most extreme elements of his party.

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