WASHINGTON — The House’s most hard-edged conservatives are anxious to derail Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s bid to become speaker, but they’re outnumbered and it’s unclear if they can rally behind an alternative. That leaves the Californian the heavy favorite when Republicans choose their candidate to replace John Boehner on Thursday.
Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, the leader of the House Freedom Caucus, said Wednesday that his group of several dozen rebellious conservatives intended to vote as a bloc in the secret ballot of GOP lawmakers. But there was no indication they’d settled on a candidate. And with McCarthy expected to win that vote anyway, many were looking ahead to Oct. 29, when the full House formally elects the next speaker.
“Most of us have recognized that what happens tomorrow is really not the fight. It’s about the floor,” said Rep. Matt Salmon of Arizona, a Freedom Caucus member.