The US Congress recovenes but cannot yet get down to work because there is no House speaker elected. Quick explainer here: the US Congress is in two chambers. The Senate is where the Democrats have the majority. The House of Representatives is where the problem lies. Without a House speaker, the wheels of power cannot turn. And a split in the majority party there, the Republicans, is causing a seizure in the motor of governance.
A key character in this is Kevin McCarthy, a California representative, talked up as the next speaker even before the November midterm elections. His road map to power and influence has been ripped up, largely because of the decision of far-right- leaning Republicans not to give him their vote.
We discuss what's at stake with our panel of guests.
Produced by Charles Wente, Juliette Laurain and Imen Mellaz.
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