Republicans withholding speakership support from Kevin McCarthy cite 'past and ongoing GOP failures'
This Tuesday, January 3, a new Republican majority will take over the U.S. House of Representatives. Democratic Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York will become House minority leader, but it remains to be seen who will be chosen as House speaker.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is hoping that fellow Republicans will choose him, and he has the support of far-right Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. But some House Republicans clearly don’t want McCarthy as House speaker and have said that they aren’t supporting him. Others have been noncommittal.
Reporting for Fox News’ website in an article published on New Year’s Day 2023, Greg Wehner and Tyler Olson explain, “Prospective House Speaker Kevin McCarthy is still tussling with some members of his party who are concerned electing him to be speaker would be a ‘continuation of past and ongoing Republican failures.’ Last week, the California Republican floated a congressional rule change that would make it easier to remove a House speaker in exchange for his rise to the post, a key demand from powerful GOP opponents.”
The Fox News reporters note that under the rule that was “imposed under” ongoing Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, “only a member of the House leadership can offer a motion to vacate, while the new proposal would allow any member of the House to force a vote to remove the speaker at any time.”
On New Year’s Day, McCarthy met with other House Republicans in the hope of persuading them to vote for him as House speaker. And before that, on New Year’s Eve, McCarthy made his case in a letter titled "Restoring the People’s House and Ending Business as Usual” — a letter that received an unfavorable response from a combination of House Republicans and Republicans who are set to be sworn into the House on January 3.
Those Republicans included Rep. Scott Perry of Pennsylvania, Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona, Rep. Chip Roy of Texas, Dan Bishop of North Carolina and Rep. Andrew Clyde of Georgia, among others.
The Republicans, responding with a letter of their own, argued, “Regrettably, however, despite some progress achieved, Mr. McCarthy’s statement comes almost impossibly late to address continued deficiencies ahead of the opening of the 118th Congress on January 3rd. At this state, it cannot be a surprise that expressions of vague hopes reflected in far too many of the crucial points still under debate are insufficient. This is especially true with respect to Mr. McCarthy’s candidacy for speaker because the times call for radical departure from the status quo — not a continuation of past and ongoing, Republican failures."
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