(NewsNation) — The GOP is just one win away from securing the House majority, but conflict within the Republican Party over who will lead as the GOP House speaker has emerged.
Republicans plan to hold leadership elections for the next Congress later in the day Tuesday, even though there are still House races to be decided.
Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona late on Monday announced a run for speaker of the House, challenging House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy in the Republican conference’s nomination to the post.
Brendan Buck, a Republican strategist and onetime counselor to former Speaker Paul Ryan, joined NewsNation Live to discuss the feud within the GOP and what could result from it.
“I don’t think this is really about Kevin McCarthy, I think what you’re seeing in the House is you have a handful of members who want relevance. And they see that with a very narrow majority, any one of them has incredible leverage over whether it’s the speaker or leadership in general, because if they don’t vote with the team, everything falls apart,” Buck said.
He explained that some people are just opportunists and will use this as a chance to show off the power they do have with the thin majority. However, Buck said he believes McCarthy will become House speaker and “at some point, this act is going to wear pretty thin with the rest of their colleagues.”
But Buck said that sometimes having a narrow margin can breed unity.
“I think it’s natural right now that a lot of people who are blowing off some steam, they’re frustrated with how it went. But at some point, you got to get things done. And you realize that you don’t have a lot of room for disagreement,” Buck said.
He said that as much as Republicans are difficult to manage — explaining that they have been much more unruly than Democrats in recent years — there is always a sentiment that they want to be on the same page and have been in many closed-door conference meetings.
“They all say, very proudly, that they’re proud to be on this team and they want to be on the same page,” Buck explained. “And sometimes they have to be.”