Even after a House Republican meeting last week to name House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., the official GOP speaker nominee, several holdouts could still thwart his chances.
Facing a narrow majority (currently projected to be 222-213), the party currently has three notable House conference members in holding out strongly against the establishment: Reps. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., Ralph Norman, R-S.C., and Andy Biggs, R-Ariz.
Gaetz, an outspoken opponent of McCarthy, made his stance known last week on "The Charlie Kirk Show" before the House conference vote, assuring his "no" vote would also transfer to the floor.
"I'm not voting for Kevin McCarthy," Gaetz said. "I'm not voting for him tomorrow. I'm not voting for him on the floor. And I am certain that there is a critical mass of people who hold my precise view. And so, the sooner we can sort of dispense with the notion that Kevin is going to be speaker, then we can get to the important work."
Meanwhile, Biggs, who unsuccessfully challenged McCarthy for the top spot, revealed in an opinion editorial for American Greatness on Thursday he does not "believe he will ever get to 218 votes" and would "refuse to assist him in his effort to get those votes."
"In the end, I must concur with my constituents: It is time to make a change at the top of the House of Representatives; I cannot vote for the gentleman from California, Mr. McCarthy," the Arizona congressman wrote.
Norman joined his two colleagues in an interview with Just The News on Monday night, telling the outlet McCarthy's complacency with "runaway federal spending" motivated his decision.
"I'm not going to support Kevin McCarthy," Norman declared. "Washington is broken. There's a cancer in this country, and it can't be fixed with aspirin. It's called overspending. When you're bankrupt, you can't function as a country."
Rep. Matt Rosendale, R-Mont., has not shared an official decision yet, but indicated through Twitter last week McCarthy "isn't willing" to make the changes necessary to return the House to rules that predate current House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.
"He wants to maintain the status quo, which consolidates power into his hands and a small group of individuals he personally selects," Rosendale said. "We need a leader who can stand up to a Democrat-controlled Senate and President Biden, and unfortunately, that isn't Kevin McCarthy."
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