Andy Biggs Officially Challenges Kevin McCarthy for House Speaker

Andy Biggs says that further leadership from McCarthy would entrench the establishment “uniparty” in Congress.

QUICK FACTS:
  • House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has been challenged by Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) to become Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.
  • McCarthy won the Republican nomination to become Speaker over Biggs last month by a vote of 188 to 31. However, Biggs, who chairs the conservative House Freedom Caucus, wrote an opinion piece on Tuesday for The Daily Caller arguing that further leadership from McCarthy would entrench the establishment “uniparty” in Congress.
  • Matthew Tragesser, a spokesperson for Biggs, said that the nomination vote revealed McCarthy does not currently have enough support among Republicans to become Speaker.
  • McCarthy has served in the House since 2007 while Biggs has served since 2017.
  • On Tuesday, Biggs contended that McCarthy was disloyal to former President Donald J. Trump and encouraged colleagues to “reinvigorate the America First movement” that Trump started.
BIGGS IS READY TO SHAKE UP THE STATUS QUO:
  • Biggs explained his decision to challenge McCarthy was based on an understanding of what he would be risking: “We cannot let this all too rare opportunity to effectuate structural change pass us by because it is uncomfortable to challenge the Republican candidate who is a creature of the establishment status quo, or because the challenge is accompanied by some minimal risk.”
  • He added: “I think Americans want us to actually bring the budget under control, they wanted to secure the border, they want us to just find a way to reduce oil and gas prices, attack inflation, all of that. And you can’t do that by being a passive sideliner or sitting there acquiescing to the Biden administration or trying to get along, you’re going to have to be tough.”
  • “The purpose of the establishment is not to better the lives of Americans, the purpose is to gain and keep power,” the representative continued. “If anyone besides the establishment class experiences positive effects from the rule of the establishment, it is merely serendipitous.”
  • McCarthy, however, is rallying the Republicans, last month saying that it would come down to a “tight majority so everyone is going to have to work together, we’ll be successful as a team and we’ll be defeated as an individual if we don’t all work together.”
BACKGROUND:
  • Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) blasted McCarthy for attending a state dinner hosted by the Biden White House.
  • Gaetz posted on Twitter, “Tonight Kevin McCarthy had dinner with Hunter Biden at a state dinner with Macron to rally support for more US aid to Ukraine, he should not be Speaker.”
  • McCarthy shrugged off a reporter’s question about the dinner with the Bidens, saying to the reporter, “I’m at a dinner with my mom so I’m going to have a great time.”