In November, the Republicans narrowly won control of the House of Representatives, leaving McCarthy with just a handful of votes to run for Speaker of the House
This allowed a group of hard-line conservatives to oppose his nomination. The time will come, according to Republican observers
"Kevin McCarthy hasn't befriended certain parts of the caucus in a while, he's made a lot of enemies," said a Republican lobbyist
There are people who dislike him for political reasons, for personal reasons.Mr. McCarthy has entered negotiations with his critics,
who see him as overly conventional and power-hungry, and is offering concessions to try and win their vote.
At one point he reportedly agreed to change House Rules to make it easier to oust the incumbent president and gave his opponents tremendous control over his power.
"The fact that he was negotiating with the Republicans made him look very, very weak to the point of desperation," the Republican lobbyist said.
The futility of this approach became clear on Tuesday. In three consecutive rounds of voting, McCarthy has failed to reach the required threshold of 218 votes.
Though Republicans hold 222 seats, a bloc of 19 far-right Republicans has solidified their opposition.