Far-left Rep. Ted Lieu offered surprising praise for a House Republican on Wednesday.
Lieu, a Democrat from Hawaii, commended Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) for standing on his principles — talking the talk and walking the walk.
"I don't agree with [Roy] on most issues. But I believe that he believes in what he says," Lieu said. "I respect that a lot more than Republicans like [Kevin McCarthy] and [Elise Stefanik] who will say anything to gain power."
Roy is one of the leading figures campaigning against Rep. Kevin McCarthy's bid to become House speaker. As of Wednesday afternoon, McCarthy had lost five consecutive ballots for the speakership.
A faction of 20 Republican lawmakers is blocking McCarthy's bid. They believe that electing McCarthy to be House speaker will empower the political status quo.
"What I'm not going to do is blindly do what the swamp does. My constituents didn't send me here to do that," Roy said Tuesday on Fox News. "Is anybody listening to this actually happy with what Congress is doing? Is anybody out there? Are you? Anybody in America, do you think Congress is doing a good job? The answer is no."
"So, why would we embrace the status quo? Why would we keep doing the same thing over and over again? That is what is happening in the room," he said.
Republican infighting has temporarily rendered the House of Representatives powerless because, as the New York Times explained, "law and precedents state that the House must elect a speaker before lawmakers take any other action."
From the Times:
Without a speaker, the United States House of Representatives essentially becomes a useless entity. With no sworn members, there are no lawmakers to make an official response to an emergency or a crisis. With no rules adopted, the legislative process cannot move forward; no bills can be passed or resolutions adopted.
As of Wednesday afternoon, House members-elect were voting on a sixth ballot for speaker. By the time of publication, 11 Republicans had already voted against McCarthy, meaning the vote will go to a seventh ballot.