Scalise Says He Won't Run Against McCarthy For House Speaker

Reps. Cedric Richmond D-La. right and Steve Scalise R-La. play during the Republicans 8-7 victory in the 55th Congressional Baseball Game at Nationals Park

Scalise, who took a leave of absence from Washington after being critically wounded in last summer's horrific softball practice shooting in Washington, now serves as House Majority Whip, the caucus' number-three position.

Ryan said he was "encouraged" when Scalise said Thursday morning that McCarthy ought to be the person to replace the speaker.

Scalise is viewed as more conservative than McCarthy, important in a House GOP conference that's drifted to the right.

House Speaker Paul Ryan's announcement Wednesday that he would not seek re-election triggered a battle for the position. That means the candidate for speaker must have votes from all or almost all members of the party to get the required total of 50 percent plus at least 1 to become speaker. But it could alienate moderates and others who want a leader who has their back, not necessarily the president's.

"So should Kevin McCarthy step aside, then I'm sure Steve Scalise would be the favorite to take that position, and even if Kevin McCarthy tries to run for the position, I think there's a lot of feelings within the Republican Caucus right now that Steve Scalise would be a better consensus candidate". But his friendship with President Donald Trump - who has called him "my Kevin" - could help his standing among many Republicans who were previously unwilling to support him.

"It's time for a reset and a refocus on one primary objective: Doing what the American people elected us to do, doing what we told them we were going to do", Jordan said. But Scalise may not have known that Ryan meant to broadcast that statement to the Washington press corps.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull racks up 30th Newspoll loss
Deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop said she doesn't plan on running against Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull if she is asked to. Mr Rudd wrote that both Mr Turnbull and Mr Shorten would be "long gone" if the same standards had been applied to them.

"I've heard from none of the candidates, and all of the mentioned candidates are not just friends, they're close friends", said Rep. Bradley Byrne, R-Ala. "And they are going to immediately start positioning as this situation develops".

McCarthy remained in his post as whip, but has not given up his leadership ambitions.

McCarthy, 53, is his party's No. 2 House leader and was one of the earliest and steadiest backers of Trump's presidential campaign.

Republican Conference Chairman Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington, Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions of Texas, and deputy Republican Whip Patrick McHenry of North Carolina, are leading candidates for higher roles. Freedom Caucus members have lambasted its passage.

A handful of caucus-leading kingmakers are expected to weigh in on these races, especially Representative Mark Meadows of North Carolina, who chairs the conservative House Freedom Caucus, a group of about three-dozen members. Former Rep. Tip O'Neill was the last speaker to retire from office in 1987, and every speaker since the Massachusetts Democrat has either resigned and left Congress early or lost the majority and control of the House. "I think nearly all of our members see it that way as well".

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