Rumor has it that Representative Steve Scalise (R-LA) is a dark horse candidate to become the next House Speaker and both Democrats and former President Donald Trump don’t seem too happy about it.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has stalled out as many Republicans see him as too weak to take on Democrats. Republicans hold a slim 222-213 majority and will need a strong leader to hold together and stop President Joe Biden’s agenda.
Scalise has made a name for himself by being a strong conservative and has the will to fight the Democrat Party. The problem is Trump is worried Scalise will split the Republican Party and gift Democrats control of who the next speaker will be.
May have the wrong man
There is no doubt that McCarthy has squandered the trust that the Republican Party had in him. He has done little to inspire confidence in his ability to be impactful and get things done.
Right now there are five Republicans holding out on electing McCarthy to be the speaker.
Allegedly, a group of lawmakers approached Scalise and told him to “just be ready” in case McCarthy fails to win the election.
Those Republicans opposing McCarthy are Representatives Matt Gaetz (R-FL), Ralph Norman (R-SC), Bob Good (R-VA), Matt Rosendale (R-MT), and Andy Biggs (R-AZ).
Scalise seems to be the backup plan to woo those Republicans who are holding out, but there are questions about if Scalise is really the guy.
According to the Daily Wire, a GOP operative claimed that “Team Hageman repeatedly asked Congressman Scalise for assistance and unlike the rest of House Leadership, he refused to lift a finger against Cheney. It was baffling, almost like he was under her spell.”
Cheney was a cancer in the Republican Party that needed to be rooted out, and Scalise’s apparent indecisiveness on how to deal with her needs to be addressed before he is considered for leadership.
A real leader is needed
Representative Andy Biggs, who is opposing McCarthy’s bid for speaker, explained that “Kevin McCarthy was created by, elevated by, and maintained by the establishment.”
Establishment Republicans have overseen failure after failure and it is time for a change in the Republican Party.
Republicans have been out of power since 2018 and have suffered humiliating defeat after humiliating defeat. Even in taking the House in the 2022 midterm elections, the general mood was defeat after Republicans failed to capture the Senate.
McCarthy likely isn’t the guy to lead Republicans but it isn’t clear that Scalise is that guy either. Republicans must move carefully to find a real leader who will stop President Biden’s agenda and hold the Biden administration accountable.