Last Updated on December 9, 2022
Russ Vought, the president of the Center for Renewing Members and member of the Donald Trump cabinet, asserted on Wednesday that McCarthy’s position as the next U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives is in contention as he does not have the overall support of the Republican party.
Russ Vought made an appearance on the current events program, The Absolute Truth with Emerald Robinson, on Wednesday.
“I do think he’s in a very precarious position that is only worsening by the day. I think he realizes that and the media is beginning to accurately report the disarray that he is in,” Vought said.
"Yea, I do think he's in a very precarious position that is only worsening by the day," @russvought weighs in on Kevin McCarthy's battle to become elected Speaker of the House.
— The Absolute Truth with Emerald Robinson (@AbsoluteWithE) December 7, 2022
“He does not have 218 votes. That is very clear,” Vought said. “The opposition to him has now withstood some serious blows from Conservative Inc. to say that somehow a bunch of things on the floor that could happen in terms of a Democrat being elected or a moderate Republican, none of which are true.”
Vought was the Director of the Office of Management and Budget in the 45th U.S. Presidential administration.
“The opposition, people like Andy Biggs [and] Bob Good, have been wonderful and have withstood the blows from Conservative Inc., that really kind of made their bed with Kevin McCarthy two years ago when they thought this would be a red wave election for various reasons,” Vought said.
Vought referred to the House as it operates today as a “political cartel.”
“The opposition is in a great place. Now you begin to think through who is a type of person who would be a suitable replacement for McCarthy and I think that is up for grabs, in the sense that the first person to come to the table and say I want to reject the way the House is run as a political cartel. I want to have it so House leadership, the speaker, is fundamentally less powerful,” Vought stated.
Vought also declared his wish for a return to a pre-Rayburn House of Reps.
“The floor control: decisions are not made behind closed doors and just brought to the floor in the form of new rules but that the Rules Committee itself becomes independent as it once was before Sam Rayburn, so that the House can actually provide accountability and transparency to the people they represent and that this is not all done in smoke-filled rooms and behind closed doors in a way that the cartel thrives in,” he said.
“The American people know that they’ve lost their voice. That’s really what we’re up against with Kevin McCarthy, who is really symbolic of what that cartel is,” Vought added.
“There are a set of freedom fighters in the House, who, by the way, have always been the best defenders of Donald Trump the President. When the [Trump] Administration was being subject to a coup d’état by the Department of Justice, the people that were waking up every morning trying to defend and message on behalf of what they were seeing from an oversight perspective was the House Freedom Caucus,” Vought said.
“[The House Freedom Caucus] are the president’s number one allies. To the extent that they believe that Kevin McCarthy is not aligned with the interests of the America First agenda, that’s the kind of thing that we want to help magnify to be able to help educate the grassroots and the conservative movement about what actually is happening, what are the opportunities and why we should trust the folks on the ground,” Vought stated.
“Trust the captain, trust the crew, they’re going to be able to lead this thing in a good direction and have a major opportunity at our hand,” Vought asserted.
The U.S. Constitution does not require that the Speaker of the House be a current member of Congress, however, no non-members have ever been elected.
The election for the next Speaker of the House will take place on January 3rd, 2022.