Here’s who McCarthy needs to convince for his debt bill


Locked in a months-long stalemate with the president, McCarthy has said this week’s House GOP plan is intended to bring Biden to the negotiating table. But first, Republicans need to pass their measure — with just four votes to spare on the floor.

“If there are any last-minute concerns, the speaker and his team know who those are and he’s addressing those,” Republican Study Committee Chair Rep. Kevin Hern (R-Okla.) said, predicting the conference would come together in time to vote Wednesday.

Here are the main blocs of objectors that Republican leaders have grappled with over the last 24 hours.


McCarthy received a surprising show of support from a corner of the conference that is known to upend him at every turn: The House Freedom Caucus.

On Wednesday morning, Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) stood before the conference and tried to sell the bill to his colleagues, explaining why he was supporting it and encouraging them to unanimously support it. In response, the opinionated Roy received a large round of applause — which one Republican member, speaking on condition of anonymity, cheekily noted is not the reaction that the gadfly Texan usually gets.

But Roy wasn’t alone. Freedom Caucus Chair Rep. Scott Perry (R-Pa.) spoke of the bill positively, as did Reps. Ralph Norman (R-S.C.), Andy Ogles (R-Tenn.), and Bob Good (R-Va.). All five of these members who stood up and spoke Wednesday morning were among the 20 who initially opposed McCarthy as speaker at the start of this Congress.

Yet the Freedom Caucus is hardly mollified for good. Its members are warning the speaker that they don’t want to see him bend when the Democratic-controlled Senate overhauls what the House GOP plans to send across the Capitol.

“I told [McCarthy] at the mic: ‘Don’t come back when they call 911 at the last hour, which any negotiator will do — run it out and say the sky is falling. No changes to the bill,” said Norman, before adding that Democrats should “be responsible” for any resulting economic disaster.


In a major win, GOP leaders have successfully locked down the votes of nearly a dozen Midwestern holdouts who had objected to parts of the bill affecting ethanol producers in their home states.

Roughly eight Midwestern Republicans — hailing primarily from Iowa, as well as Wisconsin, Minnesota and Missouri — had privately threatened to oppose the bill if leadership didn’t roll back their plans to cut benefits for certain biofuels. The latest plan does still repeal tax credits for biodiesel and some other clean fuels, but GOP leaders revised the measure so that companies already locked into contracts can still use the perk.

All of those initially skeptical Republicans now appeared to be on board.

“In the spirit of Caitlin Clark, we’re going to fight, fight, fight for Iowa. And I think we came out ahead on this,” Rep. Zach Nunn (R-Iowa) said, name-checking this year’s March Madness basketball superstar from his home state.

Wild cards

Rep. Tim Burchett (R-Tenn.) is still in the “no” column, for now, arguing the bill doesn’t do enough to pay down the debt and kvetching that McCarthy’s allies missed a meeting with him that was scheduled for Tuesday.

“It doesn’t have anything to do with them not showing up. I just don’t like being taken for granted,” Burchett said. “I waited 33 minutes, and that is enough.”

But the Tennessee Republican is heaping praise on McCarthy, whom he said has the unenviable job of trying to piece together 218 votes from a razor-thin conference. And a person familiar with internal conversations said Burchett’s colleagues were still trying to work on him during the conference meeting — though he left the room reiterating that he was a no.

Burchett isn’t alone in his concerns about the debt. Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) said Wednesday that she is “leaning no” but that she is in talks with leadership and “the ball is in their court.”

Meanwhile, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) is playing coy about how he will vote but said he was frustrated by the middle-of-the-night deal-cutting, and Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) remains a “lean no.” Leadership did change the bill to incorporate Gaetz’s demand for a speedier implementation of beefed-up work requirements for certain federal assistance, but Biggs is pushing to return spending levels to fiscal year 2019 levels.

Meredith Lee Hill contributed.

#Heres #McCarthy #convince #debt #bill
( With inputs from : )


TheNewsCaravan News Desk

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button