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Tags: mike pence | town hall | gop | speaker | house | chaos | kevin mccarthy

Pence Blames 'Chaos Caucus' for House Speaker Issues

By    |   Tuesday, 17 October 2023 10:30 PM EDT

Former Vice President Mike Pence, running for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, criticized the "chaos caucus" for causing such disarray among House Republicans, who have yet to pick a speaker after Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., was ousted Oct. 3 through a historic motion to vacate vote.

During a Newsmax town hall in Iowa on Tuesday night, co-host Rob Schmitt asked Pence, a former six-term (2001-2013) member of the House from Indiana, where he stood regarding House Republicans' inability to settle on a speaker.

"Never, ever, in all of my battles with big-spending Republicans, would I ever have considered partnering with the Democrats to oust a Republican speaker of the House," Pence said, referring to eight Republicans, led by Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., who forced the motion to vacate vote and ousted McCarthy with backing by House Democrats.

The House held a floor vote Tuesday on speaker nominee Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, the chair of the Judiciary Committee, but Jordan only got 200 votes, 17 short of what he needs to secure the speaker's gavel. The previous nominee, Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La., withdrew his candidacy last week. Another vote is expected Wednesday.

"The eight Republicans, who I call the chaos caucus, are responsible for where we are today," Pence said. "All that being said, I think Jim Jordan would make an outstanding speaker of the House. I think Steve Scalise would have made an outstanding speaker of the House.

"I think the time has come for the adults in the room on Capitol Hill to sit down with their colleagues and ask them what team they want to [support] because we've got real challenges in this country. … The American people are looking at Republicans in Congress as the last line of defense for conservatives in this country."

The eight Republicans bailed on McCarthy because they say he broke promises about reducing federal spending, including the debt-ceiling deal with President Joe Biden in June and the continuing resolution to keep the government operating on Sept. 30. Pence, a former chair of the House Republican Conference, empathized.

"I had plenty of fights with Republicans," he said. "But it's a whole different thing, the idea that eight Republicans partnered with every Democrat in Congress to throw out a Republican speaker of the House.

"To me, that chaos is never in America's interest. And it's not in the interest of any American political party. And I think the time has come for Republicans to close the door, hash it out, find a man or woman who can lead this Congress as speaker of the House and move forward."

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Michael Katz

Michael Katz is a Newsmax reporter with more than 30 years of experience reporting and editing on news, culture, and politics.

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Former Vice President Mike Pence, running for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, criticized the "chaos caucus" for causing such disarray among House Republicans, who have yet to pick a speaker after Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., was ousted.
mike pence, town hall, gop, speaker, house, chaos, kevin mccarthy, steve scalise
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2023-30-17
Tuesday, 17 October 2023 10:30 PM
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