Arizona’s far-right Congressman Andy Biggs has announced that he will run for Republican Party chairman in the U.S. lower house, despite his earlier defeat in internal balloting, at a time when Kevin McCarthy’s nomination is not entirely clear.
«It is time for new leadership in the U.S. House of Representatives,» announced Biggs, who accused McCarthy of having been «created, elevated and maintained» by the system.
«People are delighted that the far-left reign of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is coming to an end (…) Will we elect an establishment Republican as leader?» asks Biggs, who assures that Democrats are in favor of the option McCarthy represents.
Biggs has accused McCarthy of allowing himself to be influenced by the White House on issues such as passing budgets, attacks on former President Donald Trump, and even in his alleged support for the disgraced Liz Cheney. «It was only when she publicly embarrassed him that he supported her ouster,» he has said.
A vote within the House of Representatives is scheduled to take place on January 3 to elect its new speaker for a legislature in which Republicans won a slim majority that could trigger an internal fight within the party if it fails to get a candidate who gets at least 218 votes.
Currently, McCarthy can only afford to lose four Republican votes on the January ballot. Last month, when he defeated Biggs in the Republican primary, he won 188 votes, but lost 31. Now, with Biggs’ candidacy, his detractors can vote for this alternative to lead a House of Representatives, where Republicans hold 222 seats.
In the event McCarthy cannot achieve the 218 votes needed on the first ballot, there will be as many as necessary until someone does, a case that has been going on for about a century, CNN reports.
The second Republican in the current House of Representatives, Steve Scalise, has advanced that he is not speculating about the possibility of presenting his candidacy if McCarthy does not achieve the necessary support and trusts that before January 3 the party will be able to solve all its internal problems.
For Texas Representative Tony Gonzales, a McCarthy supporter, all this is nothing more than «theater», while Chip Roy, one of these hard wing Republicans, considers that this faction of the party has every right to pressure McCarthy to achieve its objectives.
«This is nothing new in our history. This is normal, we’re having a debate, just like, by the way, the Democrats had last time,» Roy has recounted, recalling the initial skepticism of some within the Democratic Party for the later Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi.