WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Clay Higgins (R-LA) released the following statement announcing he will vote for Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) to be Speaker of the House.
“Over the past several months, members of the House Republican Conference have engaged in a season of unprecedented negotiations and sometimes contentious debate. Those conversations have been driven by the House Freedom Caucus, of which I am a member. However, to their credit, Republican leadership has been receptive and has facilitated these conversations to the benefit of our Conference and our party. The rule changes that we fought for help restore the power of each individual office to this deliberative body.
“Now, this is the beginning of a new Congress. We have a Constitutional duty to elect a Speaker of the House before any legislative business can be conducted. Not a rule or a tradition… it’s Constitutional writ that Congress shall elect a Speaker of the House at the beginning of each new Congress. Without a Speaker, no committees are formed, no hearings take place, and no conservative legislation moves forward.
“In our internal debates, Kevin McCarthy received 185 votes. There were 31 of us who voted for another candidate. I was one of those 31. I have had a solid working relationship with Kevin since 2017, and I’ve spoken on that truth very candidly for six years. My vote for Andy Biggs in November reflected my support for deep Conference debate regarding Constitutionalist reform during that season of Conference deliberation. My vote in November reflected my core principles as a man who has sworn an oath to our Constitution, not to any one individual. That season of debate has been largely successful in unprecedented ways. HFC drove that debate, and Kevin McCarthy facilitated the debates. Heavy, passionate, long unscripted debates, over and over again. Conservatives won by introducing and encouraging very significant Constitutionalist reforms deep into the actual rules language of our Conference and of the House itself. Here is a link to those changes. That season of debate has passed. It was worth the fight, and the need for reforms continues but now is the time for unity as a party, as we fulfill our Constitutional obligation to elect a Speaker of the House. Kevin McCarthy has been duly elected as the Republican nominee for Speaker, and I am a Republican American man.”