Rep. Kevin McCarthy handily defeated Rep. Jim Jordan in a battle over who would lead the new Republican minority in the House. McCarthy, a California Republican favored by retiring House Speaker Paul Ryan, delivered an old fashioned whooping to Ohio’s Jordan—159-43—to become the next minority leader. Most of the other leadership elections went as thought—Steve Scalise of Louisiana was named minority whip and Liz Cheney (Dick Cheney’s daughter) of Wyoming became the GOP Conference Chair.
House Republicans are bracing for an ugly internal battle now that they lost the majority. While Democrat Nancy Pelosi is confident she will take her throne as Speaker without drama, the battle for minority leader—the leader of the House GOP caucus, is shaping up to be more of a mess. Already, Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California plan to run for the spot. McCarthy was Paul Ryan’s top lieutenant and is thought to be in the best position, but Jordan’s stock has risen among conservatives as co-founder of the House Freedom Caucus.
—MEANWHILE, Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming announced she plans to run for House Republican Conference Chair, challenging Washington Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers, creating even more discord in the new minority caucus leadership elections.