GOP lawmaker teases ‘true’ conservative alternative to McCarthy ahead of Speaker vote

Rep. Bob Good (R-Va.) predicted on Monday that a “true” conservative would emerge to challenge House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) in his quest to become Speaker and doubled down on a promise to vote against McCarthy one day ahead of the leadership election.

“I think you’ll see on the second ballot an increasing number of members vote for a true candidate who can represent the conservative center of the conference, can motivate the base,” Good said on Fox News.

McCarthy, who launched an unsuccessful bid for Speaker in 2015, has been busy trying to nail down the 218 votes necessary for victory. But dissent from some on his right has taken his campaign for the position down to the wire.

In advance of the Speaker vote on Tuesday, McCarthy has offered key concessions to his detractors. That includes allowing a move to “vacate the chair,” which would trigger a vote on the ousting of the Speaker, with the approval of just five Republicans.

McCarthy also greenlighted the creation of a House subcommittee on the “Weaponization of the Federal Government,” which would increase scrutiny on the Biden administration and federal agencies.

Good did not offer a suggestion for who might be the alternative to McCarthy. While Good said he expected “10 to 15” members to vote for Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) on the first ballot, he did not name another candidate who could emerge to challenge McCarthy on the second ballot.

In response to a question about who that person might be, Good said he would “resist” naming someone, as that person would face retaliation.

“If we were to put forth a name right now or over the last few weeks, that person would have suffered all the attacks and retaliation,” Good said. “You’ll see that name tomorrow on the second ballot.”

McCarthy, who needs a majority of voting members to become Speaker, can afford to lose no more than four Republicans because of the GOP’s slim 222 to 212 majority.

Tags Bob Good congress house Kevin McCarthy McCarthy republicans Speaker

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