McCarthy Confirms Bid to Become House Speaker

He didn't wait for confirmation of GOP victory
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 9, 2022 5:55 PM CST
McCarthy Confirms Bid to Become House Speaker
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise speaks to supporters as he celebrates his re-election in Metairie, La., Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Control of the House is still up in the air after Tuesday's midterm elections, but with Republicans looking likely to take a slim majority in the chamber, senior caucus members are eyeing new positions. Rep. Kevin McCarthy, currently the House minority leader, announced his bid to become House speaker in a letter to colleagues Wednesday, the New York Times reports. "I trust you know that earning the majority is only the beginning," he wrote. "Now, we will be measured by what we do with our majority." The Times notes, however, that after the "poorest performance in decades for a party out of power," House Republicans, especially those to the right of McCarthy, might seek alternatives.

One Republican seen as a potential rival endorsed McCarthy's bid for speaker Wednesday and announced a bid to become majority leader, the Hill reports. In his own letter to colleagues, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise spoke of his track record in keeping the GOP caucus unified. "As your Majority Leader, I will work relentlessly to usher our vision through the House and show the country how conservative ideas can solve the problems that families are facing." He said the House's oversight of the Biden administration would be "relentless." (More House of Representatives stories.)

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