WASHINGTON (AP) - The House has re-elected John Boehner to be speaker in the new Republican-led Congress, despite opposition by tea party lawmakers that underscored party divisions.
The Ohio Republican garnered the votes of 216 GOP lawmakers as Congress convened Tuesday. That was enough for him to win a third two-year term leading the House.
But in an embarrassing slap, 25 Republicans, including Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., voted for other candidates or voted present. They consider Boehner to be too accommodating and not conservative enough.
In a statement issued Sunday, Gosar said keeping the same leadership would mean staying on a course he thinks is wrong.
"I cannot stand beside the same leadership that has offered up bills too large to read, used parliamentary tricks to bring bills to the floor and has refused to take swift action against the president and his Administration's unconstitutional actions," the statement said.
"The common theme wherever I go is that we can't just keep doing things the way they 'always' have been done. We can't continue to operate with a lack of transparency and with a blind eye to the will of the people."
Gosar cast his Speaker vote for Rep. Daniel Webster, R-Fla. In all, nine candidates besides Boehner sought the Speakership.
The dissenters' repudiation of Boehner was an awkward display of GOP schisms at a time when party leaders want to show voters that they can govern effectively.
They want to show they won't be forced by tea party legislators into unwinnable, unpopular showdowns with President Barack Obama.