Stephen Colbert mocked House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) with a highlight reel of gaffes.
“It is total confusion — a banana republic. Any plan, anything you anticipate, who knows what’ll happen. People are crying. They don’t have any idea how this will unfold at all.”
— Rep. Peter King (R-NY), quoted by the Washington Post, as he recounted seeing a handful of House Republicans weeping over the downfall of Kevin McCarthy and the broader discord within the Republican party.
“In the hours before House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) abruptly withdrew his candidacy to be the next speaker of the House, he was sent an email from a conservative activist threatening to expose an alleged affair with a colleague,” the Huffington Post reports.
The subject line: “Kevin, why not resign like Bob Livingston?”
Said Boehner, a few minutes before the vote: “I’m confident he’ll win today and I’m confident he’ll win on Oct. 29.”
“But even as he reflected on his 25-year congressional career and what he might do next, his House Republican conference was thrown into a fresh round of turmoil—one that might even delay the Ohio Republicans departure… Boehner immediately postponed the election, as he and his stunned colleagues scrambled to figure out their next move.”
Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) said that Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) withdrew from the Speaker’s race “because although he could have won a majority of the Republican Conference, he would not have had 218 votes on the House floor,” the Washington Post reports.
Dent also said it might be necessary to form a “bipartisan coalition” with Democrats to elect the next speaker and avoid having to appease the “rejectionist wing” of his own party, which he said has made the House ungovernable by insisting on “unreasonable demands.”
“A group of hard-line conservatives threatened to upend the Republican race to succeed outgoing House Speaker John Boehner, announcing on Wednesday it will throw its support behind a little-known Florida lawmaker to become the next speaker,” the Washington Post reports.
“The House Freedom Caucus’s backing of Rep. Daniel Webster (R-FL) ahead of a crucial internal party vote Thursday deeply complicates Majority Leader Kevin O. McCarthy’s bid to succeed Boehner. The group counts enough members — about 40 — to deny McCarthy the majority of the whole House he would need to claim the speaker’s chair.”
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) appeared on Fox News to walk back his comments that House Benghazi Committee was about taking down Hillary Clinton’s approval rating.
Said McCarthy :”This committee was set up for one sole purpose, to find the truth on behalf of the families of four dead Americans. Now I did not intend to imply in any way that that work was political. Of course it is not, look at the way they have carried themselves out. The point I was trying to make and I want to be very clear about this, I wasn’t saying the committee was political, that committee is solely to get the truth out.”
But as First Read notes, the Republican Party’s House campaign arm, ran the following fundraising solicitation yesterday: “You’re now a Benghazi Watchdog. Let’s go after Obama and Hillary Clinton. Help us fight them now.” It’s since been deleted.
Hillary Clinton’s “upcoming appearance before the U.S. House Select Committee on Benghazi was supposed to be a crucible: a chance for Republicans to prosecute the former secretary of state for her handling of the 2012 terrorist attacks that killed four Americans as well as for her use of a private e-mail server,” the Washington Post reports.
“Instead, it may have turned into a political gift for Clinton following this week’s suggestion by the likely next House speaker, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), that the taxpayer-funded Benghazi investigation was politically motivated. Clinton’s allies say his comments will help recast Clinton’s scheduled Oct. 22 hearing as a partisan inquisition rather than a fact-finding mission about the attacks in Libya.”
“McCarthy boasted in two television interviews on Tuesday that the committee’s work already had achieved a desired result: Clinton’s decline in the polls.”
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) credited the House Benghazi investigation for driving down Hillary Clinton’s approval ratings, the Washington Post reports.
Said McCarthy: “Everybody though Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she’s untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened, had we not fought.”
First Read: “As for the race to replace Boehner, it appears that it’s Kevin McCarthy’s race to lose — McCarthy is currently the No. 2 as House Majority Leader. Both Reps. Steve Scalise and Cathy McMorris Rodgers appear to be running for McCarthy’s job as majority leader. Remember, if Scalise (the majority whip) or Rodgers (the No. 4 in House leadership) loses, they get to keep their current post, so both essentially have a free shot.”
“Meanwhile, it’s interesting that Rep. Jeb Hensarling isn’t trying to make a run for speaker (or even Majority Leader). Is he the Texas Hamlet? Perhaps. But maybe his attitude is to see what happens later this year, especially if McCarthy has to make decisions that could alienate House conservatives.”
Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), “who is quietly locking down support to be the next House speaker, is privately assuring Republicans he’ll take a tougher stand against the White House — and also the Senate GOP leadership,” CNN reports.
“He’s hearing from members angry that the GOP Congress has not advanced the conservative cause more forcefully, and he’s responding with a clear message: He is willing to take a more confrontational stand with the White House and the Senate to achieve the results the party has sought to enact.”
Wall Street Journal: “The most militant House Republicans are expected to be emboldened by Mr. Boehner’s departure, and even less likely to agree to a compromise with Democrats in setting spending levels for the rest of fiscal year 2016.”
Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) “is expected to complete what can only be described as one of the most historic climbs to power in U.S. political history,” Politico reports.
“The former deli owner turned Capitol Hill aide turned lawmaker will be third in line to the presidency, behind Barack Obama and Joe Biden. He is only 15 years removed from his first run for public office: a trustee for the Kern Community College District.”
Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) “celebrated his first election to Congress at an In-N-Out Burger, sipping sodas from paper cups at Formica tables with his wife and children… Eight years later, as the new House majority leader, McCarthy commands a multimillion-dollar political operation featuring lavish meals, opulent getaways with lobbyists, and privately chartered aircraft,” the Los Angeles Times reports.
“In the two years leading up to last fall’s election, McCarthy, through his reelection campaign and leadership PAC, spent $140,000 on steakhouses alone. He paid $426,000 to companies that charter private jets, covering 46 trips. And he raised at least $10.5 million for his own and party political committees. That spending and fundraising have fueled one of the fastest rises to power in congressional history.”
Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) began “planting the seed that Republicans might need a different vehicle to fight President Obama’s executive action on immigration other than the Department of Homeland Security funding bill,” Roll Call reports.
“What that best way would be is not mentioned. But Republican leadership has started to mention another lawsuit against the president could be in the cards. Additional legislation might also be another avenue, though it won’t have the same force as the DHS funding bill, which is a must-pass measure if Congress wants to fund the agency past Feb. 27.”