GOP voters’ view of McCarthy rebounds since the release of conference tape
Republican voters’ views of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) have rebounded since the release of audio recordings from the days after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol that featured the GOP leader suggesting that former President Trump should resign over the riot.
Morning Consult published new polling numbers — taken between April 29 and May 2 — on Wednesday that show McCarthy with 40 percent support among GOP voters, while 28 percent said they had an unfavorable view of McCarthy.
The New York Times published the contents of McCarthy’s Jan. 10, 2021, phone calls with other Republican leaders on April 21 and 22.
In a poll taken between April 22 and April 25, McCarthy’s favorability rating among GOP voters was 31 percent — a 9-point slump from before the audio recordings were published, with 29 percent of GOP voters saying they had an unfavorable view of him.
The latest numbers are back to the the GOP leader’s pre-tape favorability, with Morning Consult finding between April 15 and April 17 that 40 percent of GOP voters had a favorable view of McCarthy and 22 percent had an unfavorable view.
In the tapes published by the Times, McCarthy tells his colleagues that he was inclined to tell Trump: “I think this will pass, and it would be my recommendation you should resign.”
The GOP leader at first denied ever making the comments, but audio recordings released by the Times corroborated the remarks. McCarthy has held, however, that he did not ultimately ask Trump to resign.
The McCarthy tapes sent shockwaves throughout Washington when they were released, with many wondering if the GOP would turn on McCarthy in the wake of the newly revealed comments. They were also released at a critical time for the Republican Party, as it looks to take control of the House in the November midterm elections.
The party has to flip five seats to secure the majority in the lower chamber and is widely expected to do so given high economic frustration and historical trends.
The House Republican Conference, however, appears to be looking beyond the tapes. During a meeting of the conference last week, after the tapes were published, members gave the Republican leader a standing ovation.
The latest Morning Consult survey polled 2,000 registered U.S. voters. The margin of error is plus or minus 2 percentage points.
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