Hewitt slams House Freedom Caucus

Hewitt slams House Freedom Caucus
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Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt on Sunday slammed Rep. Dave Brat (R-Va.) and the House Freedom Caucus for "holding the House hostage" and blocking Republicans from electing a successor to outgoing Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerBlue wave poses governing risks for Dems Nancy Pelosi: Will she remain the ‘Face of the Franchise’? Jordan hits campaign trail amid bid for Speaker MORE (R-Ohio), who wants to resign at the end of the month.


Hewitt said on NBC's "Meet The Press" that he hopes Rep. Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanGOP super PAC drops .5 million on Nevada ad campaign Blue wave poses governing risks for Dems Dems seek to rebuild blue wall in Rust Belt contests MORE (R-Wis.) — who has said he doesn't want to be Speaker — will change his mind.

Hewitt then criticized Brat, who was on the roundtable, and the conservative House Freedom Caucus for giving Ryan a tepid response.

"There's like 15 of you people," Hewitt said of the caucus, which has about 40 members. "The Freedom Caucus is like 15 people. Paul Ryan is liked by 225 Republicans. Get with the program."

"How do you know we're not with the program?" said Brat, who defeated former House Majority Leader Eric CantorEric Ivan CantorFake political signs target Democrat in Virginia Hillicon Valley: GOP leader wants Twitter CEO to testify on bias claims | Sinclair beefs up lobbying during merger fight | Facebook users experience brief outage | South Korea eyes new taxes on tech Sinclair hired GOP lobbyists after FCC cracked down on proposed Tribune merger MORE (R-Va.) in a stunning primary upset.

"Will you support Paul Ryan? If he wins a conference vote, will you support his agenda?" Hewitt asked.

"We've got a Constitution as a country—" Brat responded.

"It's not a hard question," Hewitt interrupted. "Will you support Paul Ryan?"

"Well, if you let me answer it, it'd be easier," Brat said. "I've got five policies outlined on my Web page. By process, if he goes with that we're going to give him a strong look."

"You're holding the House hostage," Hewitt said.

Hewitt didn't just go after Brat. He also criticized Rep. Charlie Dent (R-Pa.), a moderate Republican who was also on the panel.

"You need to stop going on CNN and blasting David," Hewitt said.

"The answer is yes, I will support Paul Ryan," Dent said. "But Paul Ryan is also a very smart man. The underlying governing and political dynamic of the House has not changed. Paul Ryan, if he becomes Speaker — and I hope he does — what will happen is that he will have to make accommodations and collaborate with the Democrats."

Dent said that Ryan "will have his legs taken out by some of his own members" should he work with Democrats.

"We all know that," Dent said. "He's going to have the same problems John Boehner had."