Members of the US House of Representatives will try for a fourth day to elect a Speaker on Friday in an attempt to end a political impasse.
The frontrunner, Republican Kevin McCarthy, has so far failed to reach the 218 votes required for election.
And there is still no clear sign that any deal will win over enough colleagues to get him over that mark.
There have so far been 11 failed votes – a paralysis of government not seen since the pre-Civil War era.
The reason for him falling short is a right-wing cohort within his own party refusing to vote for him.
Mr McCarthy needs to ease the concerns of enough Republican holdouts – 16 out of 20 – to win him the speakership.
This is nearly always a formality in US politics at the start of a Speaker’s two-year term following congressional elections.
For more than a day now, there has been talk of concessions Mr McCarthy could make to win them over. As talks proceed, the outlines of a potential deal have become more clear.
His hope at this point seems to be that if he can convince some of them to back him, there will be sufficient pressure on the others to throw in the towel and give up the fight.