Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy won the Republicans’ designation for House speaker on Tuesday, but questions remain over his ability to lock up the spot on the floor in January according to Fox News.
McCarthy, R-Calif., beat back a challenge by more conservative elements in the House Republican Conference represented by Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona. The final vote tally was 188-31.
Republican Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona mounted a challenge to Rep. Kevin McCarthy to become leader of House Republicans and Speaker of the House.
“I think the country wants a different direction from the House of Representatives,” Biggs said in a Newsmax appearance Monday night. “It’s a new world, and, yes, I’m going to be nominated [Tuesday] for the position of Speaker of the House.”
McCarthy was able to assemble a large cross-section of the House GOP conference behind his candidacy. That included conservative hardliners like Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and centrists like Rep. Brian FitzPatrick of Pennsylvania.
But the retraction of 31 supporters could spell trouble for McCarthy.
“Losing 31 means he is in serious danger of not having the votes in January which would mean he’d need to drop out either that day or he could decide to before,” said a senior aide to GOP leadership. “At that point, others would pounce.”
McCarthy will need at least 218 votes if the entire 435-member House is seated and voting in January.