kevin mccarthy
(Photo: Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

The Republican Party is facing “utter chaos” in the House of Representatives, according to a former GOP congressman.

During a discussion Sunday on MSNBC about the battle over who will become the Speaker of the House, former Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) noted that Republicans had expected to be in a much better position.

“I’m just struck by – it was only two months ago; this was going to be a triumphant week for Republicans,” he explained. “They were going to win the Senate, they were going to have a huge majority in the House, Donald Trump was going to announce his re-election. And now it’s the beginning of utter chaos.”

“They have a slim majority in the House. I think [Congressman Kevin] McCarthy will probably still cobble together a majority and become speaker, but no Republican really likes him and, most importantly, no Republican in the caucus trusts him because he has no core.”

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In 2016, Trump and the Republicans swept into power, taking control of the White House and maintaining their majorities in both chambers of Congress.

But Democrats won back the House of Representatives in a 2018 landslide after campaigning largely against Trump's caustic style.

Trump then lost reelection in 2020 to Democrat Joe Biden -- Trump still refuses to accept defeat -- while Democrats won control of the 100-seat Senate with a de-facto majority due to Vice President Kamala Harris's tie-breaking vote in the chamber split 50-50.

After leaving Washington in chaos shortly after his partisans stormed the US Capitol, Trump chose to remain in the political arena, continuing to fund-raise and hold rallies around the country.

Leading up to the 2022 midterm vote, in which Biden's Democrats had been expected to lose handily, Trump made denial of the 2020 election results a key litmus test for candidates to win his influential political endorsement.

But the predicted Republican "red wave" failed to materialize, and Democrats maintained their control of the Senate. In the House, Republicans eked out only a razor-thin majority. The results have emboldened Trump's Republican detractors.

With additional reporting by AFP