Kevin McCarthy’s fate is at stake as he makes a last-minute appeal for the House vote
House Republicans are holding a closed-door conference Tuesday morning at which embattled leader Kevin McCarthy made his last-ditch appeal for the Speaker’s gavel.
The meeting was heated, with CNN reporting that McCarthy remained defiant in the face of his critics, declaring, “God damn we’re going to win.”
He reportedly told them he had “earned” the right to be speaker.
One of his critics, Rep. Lauren Boebert, reportedly yelled “bulls***” in response to his claims that critics had come to him seeking a compromise.
But McCarthy’s support in the room also remained strong. A source familiar with the meeting told DailyMail.com that he received three standing ovations before the meeting even ended.
The 118th Congress is scheduled to begin Tuesday noon, but as of this morning the House majority party is still at odds over who will lead the chamber for the next two years.
Public strife among Republicans over McCarthy’s candidacy for speaker has already gotten their newfound power off to a rocky start.
Hot-headed GOP MP Matt Gaetz, one of the leaders of McCarthy’s opposition, ignored questions from DailyMail.com as to who he would prefer to speak instead as he headed into the morning session. He reiterated several times that he still voted “no.”
“Kevin McCarthy is part of the problem. He’s not part of the solution,” said Rep. Bob Good.
Rep. Byron Donalds, who supports McCarthy, said he was open to another candidate if the GOP leader failed on the first ballot.
But other allies stand firm, a source familiar with the meeting told DailyMail.com
Newly returning Rep. Ryan Zinke, a former Trump administration official, told members behind closed doors, “I’m going to use the words of Teddy Roosevelt. They are either with us or against us. The stakes are too high. I’m with you, Kevin.”
GOP MP Michael Guest said at the meeting, according to the DailyMail.com source: “I am one of many members here who will be there for many votes, as many days, as many weeks as it takes to get you to the to make speakers. They deserve our friendship, support and vote.’
Rep. Mike Rogers reportedly threatened that McCarthy’s critics could lose their committee assignments, which Politico said irritated House Freedom Caucus member Rep. Chip Roy.
Roy was reportedly saddened that the GOP had a “cultural issue” and was shouting profanity before he even got the mic to speak.
Rep. Scott Perry, leader of the Conservative House Freedom Caucus, released a scathing statement just hours before McCarthy’s morning meeting, accusing the California Republican of making empty promises “in the 11th hour.”
With just 222 Republicans in the new Congress, McCarthy can afford to lose just four votes to still be elected speaker
He showed confidence when he arrived at the Capitol on Tuesday morning
“We have worked in good faith for months to change the status quo. At almost every turn we were sidelined or opposed by McCarthy, and any perceived progress was often vague or contained loopholes that further increased concerns about the sincerity of the promises made,” Perry wrote.
“Kevin McCarthy had the opportunity to become Speaker of the House of Representatives. He refused.’
Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw called opposition to McCarthy “incredibly petty” during an appearance on Fox & Friends Tuesday morning.
“This is about showmanship, this is about notoriety. It has nothing to do with the conservative agenda,” Crenshaw said.
The GOP has 222 seats in the new Congress and McCarthy is expected to need 218 votes before he can only afford to lose four members to win the hammer.
Voting occurs in rounds until a majority consensus is reached. The Conservatives are expected to derail McCarthy in the first round by proposing GOP Rep. Andy Biggs, who likely won’t win the most votes but would take away from McCarthy enough to sabotage him.
His critics have yet to say who they plan to nominate instead, but several reports suggest they are eyeing McCarthy’s No. 2, newly-crowned House Majority Leader Steve Scalise.
So far there are total 14 members of his caucus who have at least strongly indicated that they are voting against him.
The disorder culminated in a meeting Monday night between McCarthy, his allies and some of his critics, including MPs Matt Gaetz and Perry.
Rep. Lauren Boebert and Matt Gaetz could pose a problem for McCarthy Tuesday – with Gaetz among the GOP leader’s most vocal critics
MPs Paul Gosar and Scott Perry signed a Sunday letter suggesting McCarthy’s proposed compromises with the Conservatives came too late
Around 5 p.m. ET, Republican lawmakers were seen entering the House Speaker’s Chamber. McCarthy’s staff moved furniture into this office earlier in the day in an apparent show of confidence – although making the move so early is reportedly standard protocol.
Gaetz told reporters the meeting was “brief and productive,” but insisted he still defied McCarthy, according to a video posted by NBC News’ Haley Talbot.
He is one of five House Republicans who have vowed to vote against the GOP leader no matter what.
However, McCarthy’s allies, like new House Majority Whip Tom Emmer, expressed confidence after walking out of the meeting.
“He’s going to be spokesman,” Emmer told reporters, according to CBS News.
McCarthy and his supporters have spent weeks trying to persuade his critics, mostly conservatives to his right, to rally behind the California Republican. But they want concessions that moderates in the party — and, until recently, McCarthy himself — were unwilling to make.
In a Sunday letter to colleagues, McCarthy announced several key concessions, including a motion to vacate the presidency with a five-vote hurdle in exchange for conference-wide support.
Under the currently proposed rules, it would allow all five House Republicans to put up a new Speaker to vote. Moderates argued that this would fuel instability within the conference, likening it to hanging a sword of Damocles over the party leader’s head.
But later that night, a group of nine other current and incoming House Republicans signed a letter calling McCarthy’s announcement of concessions “almost impossibly late.”
It has been reported that McCarthy’s (right) current No. 2, new House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (left), could be the Conservatives’ pick for an alternative to McCarthy as speaker
However, moderate Republican Rep. Don Bacon vowed to keep fueling the chaos, hinting Monday night that such a mutiny would not come easily.
According to CBS, Bacon told reporters that if the five “Never Kevin” Republicans proposed McCarthy Scalise, he would consider appointing an outgoing member of the current Congress to be Speaker.
Bacon wrote an op-ed in the Daily Caller on Monday, calling McCarthy’s leadership “outstanding” but reiterating that he is ready to work with Democrats on an alternative if the anti-McCarthy rebellion succeeds.
“There has been much talk of working with more moderate Democrats to choose a more moderate speaker,” Bacon wrote.
“But my actual words were that if the five refuse to agree on what the vast majority of the conference wants, I’m willing to work across the aisle to find a comfortable Republican.”
While conservatives oppose him, McCarthy’s supporters seem to be looking for a plan B — moderate GOP Rep. Don Bacon (pictured in 2021) has indicated multiple times that he would be willing to negotiate with Democrats over a moderate Republican speaker candidate California Republican’s bid is derailed
McCarthy has had a wide array of proxies trying to persuade the holdouts in recent weeks, from traditional conservatives like Gingrich to Donald Trump and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene — allies of many of McCarthy’s biggest critics.
But her strategy of pressuring critics to conform and warning that a worse alternative was on the horizon seemed to do little to move the needle.
Greene wrote on Twitter after reportedly also meeting with McCarthy Monday night: “Unreal for people claiming to be America First to negotiate ‘Me First’ positions when it comes to the speaker’s gavel.
“The base deserves the truth. You’d be just as disgusted as I am,” the far-right Georgia lawmaker said.
But Rep. Andy Biggs, one of the five original “Never Kevin” Republicans, tweeted after 8 p.m. ET Monday, “Even after the McCarthy machine attempts to whip votes and smear my name for several weeks, McCarthy always is.” still far behind the 218 back threshold.
“Our party still needs new leadership and I will continue to oppose McCarthy as Speaker of the House,” Biggs said.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11595037/Kevin-McCarthys-fate-hangs-balance-makes-ditch-appeal-House-Speaker-vote.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Kevin McCarthy’s fate is at stake as he makes a last-minute appeal for the House vote