Rep. Andy Biggs faces Kevin McCarthy for GOP House speaker

Rep. Andy Biggs announced Tuesday that he will formally challenge House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to run for speaker of the House, saying he is the candidate who will shake up the “establishment status quo.”

Biggs (R-Ariz.), who lost 188-31 to McCarthy (R-Calif.) in the Republican caucuses last month, has been sharply critical of McCarthy’s leadership in the chamber.

“We cannot afford to pass up the rare opportunity to effect systemic change because challenging a Republican candidate who is the creator of the establishment status quo is uncomfortable or the challenge comes with minimal risk,” Biggs wrote. . in the article The Daily Caller on Tuesday.

“We will never defeat or change the status quo by electing a status quo candidate as the third most powerful person in government, bringing us to the left’s vision of America. The establishment created, raised and supported the Republican candidate,” the congressman continued. .

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.)

Biggs is one of five members of the House Freedom Caucus who say they will vote against McCarthy taking the speaker’s hand when the full House makes its choice on Jan. 3.

The five accuse McCarthy of missing a “red tide” in the Nov. 8 midterm elections, which could have given Republicans a large majority in the House instead of the narrow nine-seat margin they ended up with. .

Although the GOP held a slight advantage in the House, 222-213, Democrats retained control of the Senate. .

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's bid to become House Speaker is being challenged by Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy

To win a full House vote in January, McCarthy will need a majority of the 218 members who support him, meaning he can’t afford to lose a single Republican because no Democrats have supported him. does not support

The California Republican said he spent “hours” with members of the House Freedom Caucus and warned fellow Republicans that the split would only hurt the party in the long run.

“Look, we have a close majority, just like the Democrats last time. And we appealed to the American public. They chose us to be the majority, to be the leaders. We must unite as one. Otherwise, we will not succeed,” McCarthy said in an interview with Fox News. “Sunday Morning Futures.”

He said many of the investigations Republicans want to pursue, including into President Biden’s son Hunter Biden, and the legislation they want to pursue will fall victim to the split.

“If people don’t come along, it will delay our ability to secure the border. This delays our ability to become energy independent. This will delay our ability to terminate 87,000 IRS agents. It delays our ability to hold the government accountable,” McCarthy said, adding that otherwise “we’re going to blow this majority away.”


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