According to Kansas Republican Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS), who was purged from a House committee leadership position, House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) admitted by careful wording late on Monday that he and House GOP leadership did indeed use a secret list of criteria to purge conservatives from House committees.
In a letter sent to three of the four conservatives that he, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, and Whip Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) removed from fiscally focused committees, Boehner said that the scorecard was not the “single criteria” involved in the decision-making process.
“As has been made clear, there is no scorecard or any other single criteria used to determine committee assignments,” Boehner wrote with a caveat. “The Steering Committee is a deliberative body that reviews all appropriate information. Any member of the Committee may present information. No appointment or decision is made without the assent of a majority of the Steering Committee Members.”
The wording here is very specific, says Huelskamp: no scorecard or any other single criteria was used. In other words, a scorecard could have been used, among other criteria. In a statement, Huelskamp said Boehner’s carefully-worded letter is an admission that such a scorecard was used.
“With this letter, Speaker Boehner has confirmed a secret scorecard was used to punish conservative Republican Congressmen,” Huelskamp said. “Back in his Pledge to America, then-Minority Leader Boehner decried the fact that ‘most important decisions are made behind closed doors, where a flurry of backroom deals has supplanted the will of the people.’ This decision by GOP leadership, in a closed-door backroom session, confirms the worst fears of the American people: that promises of transparency were simply an election-year Republican ploy.”
“Mr. Speaker, the American people are disappointed. Mr. Speaker, the American people deserve to know,” Huelskamp added. “The American people demand to see your secret scorecard.”
Huelskamp’s office released a copy of Boehner’s letter to him and Republican Reps. Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) of Michigan and Rep. David Schweikert (R-AZ) of Arizona on Tuesday evening.
As Breitbart News first reported on Monday, a House GOP source confirmed that McCarthy was the one who drafted the scorecard list and brought it to the Steering Committee.