McCarthy threatens motion to oust Pelosi if she moves forward with impeachment

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyPelosi, leaders seek to squelch Omar controversy with rare joint statement Omar: I wasn't equating terrorist organizations with democratic countries Schumer bemoans number of Republicans who believe Trump will be reinstated: 'A glaring warning' MORE (R-Calif.) on Wednesday threatened to introduce a motion to oust Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiVaccinated lawmakers no longer required to wear masks on House floor Simmering Democratic tensions show signs of boiling over Pelosi signals no further action against Omar MORE (D-Calif.) if she attempts to impeach President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump DOJ demanded metadata on 73 phone numbers and 36 email addresses, Apple says Putin says he's optimistic about working with Biden ahead of planned meeting Biden meets Queen Elizabeth for first time as president MORE or Attorney General William BarrBill BarrTrump DOJ demanded metadata on 73 phone numbers and 36 email addresses, Apple says DOJ to probe Trump-era subpoenas of lawmaker records Democrats demand Barr, Sessions testify on Apple data subpoenas MORE as a delay tactic to prevent the Senate from confirming Trump's Supreme Court nominee.

Some have pushed for Pelosi to impeach Barr or Trump, for a second time, as a stall tactic to keep empty the seat vacated by the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgJuan Williams: Time for Justice Breyer to go Democrats: Roe v. Wade blow would fuel expanding Supreme Court Abortion fight front and center ahead of midterms MORE until after the presidential election. Appearing Sunday on ABC's "This Week," Pelosi said, “We have our options. We have arrows in our quiver that I’m not about to discuss right now.” 

McCarthy blasted the comments and said he believes the president is correct in moving forward with a nomination ahead of the election. 


“The president is supposed to move forward and they will. The Senate is supposed to take the action and they will — it's their constitutional right and they are following through,” he told reporters at a press briefing on Wednesday. 

“And I will make you this one promise, listening to the Speaker on television this weekend, if she tries to move for an impeachment based upon the president following the Constitution, I think there will be a move on the floor to no longer have the question of her being Speaker. She may think she has a quiver — we do too,” he added.  

Democrats have been highly critical of the president and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellWhy the Democrats need Joe Manchin Out-of-touch Democrats running scared of progressives The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Bipartisan group reaches infrastructure deal; many questions remain MORE’s (R-Ky.) decision to move forward, arguing they are breaking the precedent they themselves set in blocking the confirmation of former President Obama's nominee Merrick GarlandMerrick GarlandGarland vows fight against voting limits that violate law House Democrats push Garland for immigration court reforms Jeff Hauser: MacBride nomination is a return to administrations that ended 'rule-of-law' and 'rich-person accountability' MORE in 2016. Republicans argue that since the White House and the Senate are held by the same party, the circumstances are different and they should proceed. 

Even prior to the Supreme Court vacancy, members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus were advocating for McCarthy to introduce the motion to vacate — essentially a motion to oust the Speaker — with some arguing it could be an effective way to demonstrate to voters that they are pushing back against Pelosi's agenda and critical remarks about Republicans. 

The topic was discussed during a closed-door House Republicans meeting on the upcoming election at the Capitol Hill Club Wednesday morning. Lawmakers emerging from the meeting said the discussion was civil and that McCarthy mostly just listened to the various arguments from the Freedom Caucus and other members. 


"It was civil, and considering we're so many days from Election Day, it was very civil," Rep. Frank LucasFrank Dean LucasHouse Science panel requests briefing with Energy Dept over Colonial hack On The Trail: Texas underscores Democrats' struggle with voter turnout GOP lawmaker calls for bolstering research budgets to help space program MORE (R-Okla.).

But sources in the room said McCarthy also warned colleagues that forcing a floor vote to oust Pelosi before the election could give frontline Democrats, those facing the toughest reelections, a free pass to vote against Pelosi and distance themselves from the Speaker — something that could be politically advantageous for them this fall. 

Freedom Caucus members, including Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-Ariz.), said they did not think McCarthy would pursue the motion to vacate before the election.

Other senior GOP sources said that the likelihood of moving forward is unlikely due to a lack of quorum within the House Republican Conference. 

Scott Wong contributed.