GOP Rep Mo Brooks: Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise Possible Candidates to Lead House GOP If Paul Ryan Steps Aside

Tuesday on Birmingham, AL radio’s Talk 99.5, Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) reacted to the possibility of House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) not seeking reelection and what that could mean for the leadership of Republicans in the House of Representatives.

Brooks dismissed the possibility of him seeking a leadership post but speculated on the possibility of Ryan not seeking reelection.

“Every indication is that Paul Ryan is not going to run for reelection,” Brooks said. “But he hasn’t publicly said it. Until he publicly says it, he could be running for reelection. There’s really no way of know, but most people, particularly if you’re running for Speaker of the House, if you’re running for reelection, you make that known loudly and early so that there is no ambiguity and there is no opposition that rises either in your district or in the halls of Congress that want to be the next speaker.”

He named House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) as two possibilities that could fill the void left behind by Ryan.

“I’m sure Kevin McCarthy out of California wants to be speaker,” Brooks said. “He’s not speaker now because he’s got a fairly liberal Republican track record — I mean as far as Republicans go, across the spectrum. He’s not liberal. I want to be real clear about that. He didn’t get it last time because of those reasons. Now Kevin is very sharp, very likable but he’s a little bit out of the mainstream of the Republican Party being from California like he is. He would be an acceptable speaker — maybe a little bit more liberal than Paul Ryan. That would be pretty close.”

“The talk primarily is focused on Steve Scalise who is from Louisiana,” he continued. “He’s somewhat of a heroic figured because of what he went through with the baseball shooting. And then he’s a little more conservative than Kevin McCarthy and thus, might be better suited.”

Brooks went on to add the “wildcard” would be President Donald Trump and said he could endorse somebody, which would shake up any contest for the leadership post.

Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor


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