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Kevin McCarthy’s got problems. The internet’s got jokes.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s pain is seemingly the internet’s gain.

As the California Republican attempts to rally support for his tumultuous bid to become House speaker — which has failed through six rounds of voting, leaving the House at a standstill and without any official members — late-night talk shows, brands and Washingtonians broke out the popcorn to commiserate about the political dysfunction.

“The Daily Show” opted to depict McCarthy’s failed attempts with this “live look” — a tweet with a clip of a young boy getting knocked down by a large swinging beam, again and again, each time he tries to step up to a podium.

Live look at Kevin McCarthy

— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) January 4, 2023

Stephen Colbert’s “Late Show” depicted McCarthy as a (fictional) cast member in James Cameron’s second Avatar movie, dubbing him “Sad-Atar” — and calling it a “seemingly endless, gripping drama and epic spectacle.”

Kevin McCarthy’s speaker battle has become a seemingly endless, gripping drama and epic spectacle. Which is why we’re calling it:

— The Late Show (@colbertlateshow) January 5, 2023

It is the first time in 100 years that a House speaker has not been elected on the first ballot. With the political drama lurching into its third day, McCarthy is scrambling to offer concessions to hard-right GOP holdouts to secure the speaker position.

Former “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart said Tuesday night that this was “the best season of cpsan … ever,” as Americans tuned in to the channel providing rolling coverage of the House floor in anticipation of votes.

This is the best season of cspan…ever.

— Jon Stewart (@jonstewart) January 4, 2023

Others seized on a recent British meme about chaos among party leadership. The Lincoln Project, a group founded by former and current Republicans who did not support former president Donald Trump, depicted McCarthy next to a lettuce with eyes to see whether it would expire before McCarthy’s bid.

The joke is a riff on the British tabloid Daily Star’s live feed on whether beleaguered Prime Minister Liz Truss would outlast the shelf life of a lettuce. (In Britain, the lettuce won.)

Who will last longer? Vote in the comments

— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) January 3, 2023

Others grasped at sports metaphors for political solutions. One journalist suggested the decision should be decided by “penalty kicks” — a tense way to end soccer matches when games conclude in a tie.

The speakership now goes to penalty kicks

— Lizzie O’Leary (@lizzieohreally) January 3, 2023

Some companies got in on the chaos, too. A pizza chain in Washington teased that it was “more popular than McCarthy” after dozens of takeout pizza boxes were seen being delivered to the House as fraught negotiations continued.

Damn ok @andpizza

— Dave Jorgenson (@davejorgenson) January 4, 2023

Democrats, unsurprisingly, seized the opportunity to get in on the jokes.

The only Kevin that can defend a house

— Congressman Chuy García (@RepChuyGarcia) January 4, 2023

Kevin McCarthy has lost the Speaker of the House SIX TIMES….One…Two….Three …Four….Five….Six Times!

— Richard N. Ojeda, II (@Ojeda4America) January 4, 2023

One Twitter user opted to poke fun at two public figures at once — repurposing a tweet made famous by the site’s new owner, Elon Musk, who put it to an online poll whether he should stand down.

crazy that he tweeted this

— Jackson Boaz (@jacksonboaz_) January 5, 2023

On Thursday, Musk backed McCarthy for speaker.

This post appeared first on The Washington Post

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