House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) is down to the wire to get votes for his ambitions to obtain the Speaker’s gavel.
As time runs out, McCarthy had to make a string of concessions to the right to get the votes he required, in the process giving up much of his power. McCarthy has also had to agree to requests by those in his caucus to be harder on Democrats.
Despite the concessions, those within the Republican caucus deadset against McCarthy haven’t wavered.
Instead, many of McCarthy’s critics haven’t revealed how they plan on voting and are digging in their heels.
Chairman of House Freedom Caucus, Scott Perry (R-PA.), insisted that McCarthy’s detractors weren’t at fault for McCarthy’s scrambling at “the eleventh hour.”
Perry also hasn’t indicated who intends to vote.
An influential conservative group, the Club for Growth, has also been pushing for an alternative Speaker candidate who makes concessions they favor.
McCarthy also has tight margins to operate in, given there are only 222 incoming Republicans, and he’ll need 218 votes to secure the Speakership.
In the face of uncertainty about the Speakership, McCarthy has still decided to move into the Speaker’s Office in the Capital after Nancy Pelosi moved out for the holidays.
But that confidence doesn’t guarantee McCarthy’s name will be on the nameplate above the suite’s door.
As McCarthy was walking out of the Speaker’s suite on Monday (January 2), reporters queried whether he had the votes to get the votes, to which he replied, “And take away all the excitement?”