Lawrence O’Donnell reported last night that if Kevin McCarthy fails to secure the House Speakership on the first ballot today, and every indication is that he absolutely will, what will result is a first in American History. For the first time a black woman, Clerk of the House Cheryl Johnson of Louisiana, appointed by Nancy Pelosi, will take over the gavel and preside over the House until the Speakership is decided.

And that may take some time.

Below is O’Donnell’s commentary on Twitter.

And, for those who don’t Tweet, on YouTube.

Unfortunately I could not find a news story on this development but here is what Wikipedia has on Ms. Johnson’s appointment as Clerk of the House:

“In late December 2018, Speaker-designate Nancy Pelosi named Johnson as her choice for the next Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives. On February 25, 2019 Johnson was sworn as the 36th Clerk and assumed the role on February 26, 2019. She was preceded by Karen L. Haas. The son of former Representative Bill Clay, Representative Lacy Clay, welcomed Johnson during her swearing in on the House floor.”

And some comments from Twitter:

I would be perfectly content to see McCarthy’s battle to last two years.


What SCS said, Lawrence.


Works for me.

Not at all, Jackie, just common sense.

Could be forever.

It has taken this nation much too long to have a competent black woman in charge of the People’s House, but nevertheless let me add my congratulations to Cheryl Johnson for her achievement.

Let us hope it takes some time for the Rethuglicans to come to consensus, and…

Long may she reign.

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