Speaker of the House Race
Boehner has announced that elections for party leadership in the Republican conference will take place on October 8. The race for each position has been defined as much by who isn’t running as the field itself, with a number of noteworthy members taking their hat out of the ring. Specifically, Trey Gowdy (R-SC), Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Cathy McMorris-Rogers (R-WA), Pete Roskam (R-IL) and Paul Ryan (R-WI) have all announced they will not run for Speaker.
Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), the current majority leader, is likely to become the next Speaker based on current reports. McCarthy, along with Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor (R-VA), started the Young Guns program that helped usher in the Republican majority five years ago. He has remained committed to fundraising for fellow Republicans since then. According to insiders, having only been in Congress since 2006, McCarthy is viewed as “new blood” unlike Boehner who first arrived in Washington in 1991.
Majority Leader and Whip Contenders
It’s the position that McCarthy is leaving that is likely to present the most contentious fight. Specifically, two powerful House members - Representatives Tom Price (R-GA) and Steve Scalise (R-LA) - are vying for the coveted post of House Majority Leader. Price, in particular, has already secured some high profile endorsements. They include nods from Hensarling, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, and Ryan, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.
Price is the chairman of the Budget Committee, a member of the Ways and Means Committee, a former member of the Financial Services Committee, and a former chairman of the Republican Study Committee. Scalise is the current Majority Whip and member of the influential Energy and Commerce Committee. He is also a former chairman of the Republican Study Committee - a conservative policy body within the Republican Conference.
The role of Majority Whip is also open as a result of Scalise’s run for Majority Leader, with Patrick McHenry (R-NC) and Pete Sessions (R-TX) as the top candidates.