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Majority of Freedom Caucus Opposes Matt Gaetz’s Motion to Oust Speaker Kevin McCarthy

The majority of Freedom Caucus members oppose Rep. Matt Gaetz’s (R-FL) motion to oust Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), including many of whom initially opposed McCarthy’s bid for leader of the House.

A majority of the Freedom Caucus also believes it is not the right time to use the controversial motion-to-vacate procedure to remove McCarthy. Many hardline conservatives also believe it largely distracts from pushing the House Republican Conference rightwards on policy.

After the House Republican Conference meeting on Tuesday morning, Rep. Ralph Norman (R-SC) announced he would oppose the motion to vacate.

Rep. Michael Cloud (R-TX) said he has concerns that the move to oust McCarthy would “blow up the funding process” as conservatives press to pass the remainder of the appropriations bills.

Chairman Scott Perry (R-PA) said he would not vote to oust McCarthy; however, he explained, “Kevin has earned the situation that we have, in my opinion.”

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) said, “There was an admission by Matt Gaetz, who’s my friend, that there is no plan. There’s no one that has stepped forward to run. There’s no one that is coming out saying I’ll be speaker and rallying support within the conference.”

House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) predicted that McCarthy could overcome opposition and remain speaker.

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY), one of the original sponsors of the move to oust then-Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), said that removing McCarthy would likely result in worse outcomes for conservatives.

“I fear that attempting to vacate Speaker McCarthy at this juncture is a bad idea that will lead to worse outcomes for conservatives,” Massie wrote.

“Creating a Republican vacancy in the Republican controlled House, while Schumer & McConnell lead the Senate, seems like a recipe for an Omnibus,” Massie continued. “Forcing the existing Speaker or a new Speaker into a power sharing arrangement with House Democrats probably results in an Omni too.”

 

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