Acting Speaker Drama: McHenry’s ‘Pure Anger’ Unleashed…

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After serving as caretaker speaker for three weeks, Rep. Patrick McHenry acknowledged Thursday how frustrating the experience was, and he didn’t sound too sure that the House GOP could keep its newfound unity: The answer is, “We’ll see.”

The North Carolina Republican spilled the beans to reporters a day after handing over the gavel to Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.), and also secretly started his own reelection campaign for an 11th term. Despite his position as Kevin McCarthy’s top deputy, McHenry claimed, “I have not talked to Speaker Johnson at all.”

“Kevin duct-taped the conference together pretty well for 10 months,” McHenry boasted in the Senate. In comparison to the past three weeks, this one has been a breeze.

After becoming acting speaker pro tempore and banging the gavel heard ’round the world, McHenry explained his emotions at the time: “Pure anger.”

McHenry claimed he performed “light research” about the job two weeks before McCarthy was fired, “and then a whole lot more as it got closer.”

According to McHenry, he and McCarthy hadn’t talked about how he would tackle the part “because we didn’t think it would take three weeks.”

McHenry said he tried to keep his cool while keeping the House together. He claimed he had ignored repeated calls from both parties for him to take action on legislation.

“I was focused on my role and being a facilitator and steward of the office,” McHenry explained. We need to be “less caught up in candidatures and much more focused on making sure we had a transition.”

Are the Republicans capable of continuing their unity?

“Everyone is going to go see it,” he declared. To quote one participant: “We’re all going to see it live.”

As the House moves on to appropriations legislation and responses to the hostilities in Israel and Ukraine, he argued that Republicans and Democrats must work together.

“We have a world on fire,” McHenry declared. There’s no way to avoid dealing with that, so you might as well get used to it.

McHenry has stated that he will be returning to his duties as chairman of the House Committee on Financial Services. The passage of two laws that would significantly alter American cryptocurrency regulation is at the top of his list of goals.

He remarked, “I’ve got a stack of policy that I want to get into end-of-year packages.” “I’m concentrating on that right now.”

McHenry declared his reelection late Wednesday, although he will be forced to step down as the Financial Services Committee’s ranking Republican in 2025 due to term limits. He didn’t say whether he planned to apply for a special exemption from the Republican policy.

McHenry was quoted as saying, “I’m not prepared to talk about it.” “Give me a little time to decompress from being speaker pro tem,” he said.


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