Hensarling to pass on leadership bid

Hensarling to pass on leadership bid
© Anne Wernikoff

Conservative Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), chairman of the powerful Financial Services Committee, won't run for leadership, a senior GOP source said Monday.

Hensarling will pass on a bid for both Speaker and majority leader following Ohio Republican John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFive GOP lawmakers mulling bid to lead conservative caucus Ex-lawmakers see tough job market with trade groups Veterans are left out of medical marijuana protections MORE's surprise announcement Friday that he would relinquish the Speaker's gavel and step down from Congress on Oct. 30.

He will instead back a fellow conservative, Budget Chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.) in the race for majority leader, the No. 2 job, according to a senior GOP lawmaker who received a call from Hensarling over the weekend.

A Hensarling spokeswoman had no comment. But Hensarling passed on a leadership bid as recently as last year, ultimately deciding not to challenge Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) in the race for the No. 2 job after then-Majority Leader Eric CantorEric Ivan CantorDave Brat's seat moved to 'toss-up' 4 years after upset victory over Eric Cantor The animating forces behind the Democratic Party are true, radical leftists Divided Democrats are in danger MORE (R-Va.) was ousted from office in his GOP primary.

Hensarling's decision makes next month's majority leader race a three-way contest between Price, Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) and GOP Conference Chairwoman Cathy McMorris RodgersCathy McMorris RodgersThe Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by Better Medicare Alliance — Dramatic battle looms after Kennedy’s retirement Immigration overhaul on life support in the House Vulnerable House GOP leader takes lead on family separations bill MORE (R-Wash.), the only woman running so far for a top-tier leadership post.
 
Current Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) is the heavy favorite over Rep. Daniel Webster (R-Fla.) in the race to replace BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFive GOP lawmakers mulling bid to lead conservative caucus Ex-lawmakers see tough job market with trade groups Veterans are left out of medical marijuana protections MORE.