What the 21 McCarthy Holdouts Achieved in Committee Assignments

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WASHINGTON — The 21 House Republicans who initially blocked Representative Kevin McCarthy from winning the presidency demanded big changes to House rules, but they also wanted more influence on the congressional committees that will set the GOP agenda for the next two years.

While not all holdouts got exactly what they asked for, some won committee assignments from McCarthy, R-Calif., and his allies after they helped him secure the speaker’s gavel, a process that took 15 rounds of voting.

Here’s what we know as of Tuesday night:

  • Representative Andy Biggs of Arizona, former head of the Freedom Caucus and one of five named Never Kevins, will retain his seat on the powerful Judiciary Committee. He changed his vote to “introduce” in the final speaker vote, helping push McCarthy across the finish line.
  • Rep. Dan Bishop from South Carolinaone of the 13 strongholds who supported McCarthy on the 12th ballot, will continue to serve on the Judiciary Committee.
  • Representative Lauren Boebert of Colorado, a vocal critic of McCarthy who voted “present” on both the 14th and 15th ballots, was awarded a seat on the Oversight and Accountability Committee, which plans to launch several investigations into the Biden administration. She will continue to serve on the Natural Resources panel, which she served on at the previous Congress.
  • Freshman Representative Josh Brecheen of Oklahomawhich switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, won a seat on the Committee on Homeland Security.
  • Texas Representative Mike Cloudwho also switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, won a new seat on the powerful Appropriations Committee, which controls federal spending.
  • Representative Andrew Clyde of Georgiaanother legislator who switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, will serve for the first time on Appropriations.
  • Freshman Representative Eli Crane of Arizonawho voted “present” on the 15th ballot, will serve on the Committee on Homeland Security.
  • Rep. Florida’s Byron Donalds, who was nominated to run against McCarthy for speaker and went to him on the 12th ballot, was named by McCarthy as the “speaker’s designee” on the influential Steering Committee, which decides which legislators get the committee’s gavels and seats. Donalds also earned a coveted seat on the Financial Services Committee, a high-ranking panel known on Capitol Hill as an “A” committee.
  • Rep. Florida’s Matt Gaetzperhaps McCarthy’s most vocal foe during the orators’ fight, which he switched to “introduce” in Round 14, will continue to serve on the Judiciary panel.
  • Representative Bob Good of Virginiaone of the Never Kevins who switched to “present” in the last round of voting, has yet to receive his committee assignments.
  • Department Paul Gosar from Arizonawho switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, was reinstated by Republicans on two committees – oversight panels and natural resources – after Democrats removed him two years ago for posting threats to lawmakers on social media.
  • Representative Andy Harris of Maryland, who switched to McCarthy on the 13th ballot, will continue to serve on the appropriations panel. Harris, a physician, will serve as chairman of the subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration.
  • Freshman Representative Anna Paulina Luna of Floridawhich switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, won a seat on the Natural Resources panel.
  • Representative Mary Miller of Illinoiswhich switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, will remain on the Agriculture Committee.
  • Rep. Ralph Norman from South Carolinaone of the Never Kevins who switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, will remain on the Financial Services panel, which he joined in June.
  • Freshman Representative Andy Ogles of Tennesseewhich switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, also won a seat in Financial Services.
  • Rep. Scott Perry from Pennsylvaniathe chairman of the far-right Freedom Caucus, which brokered a deal between the Conservatives and McCarthy, will remain on the Foreign Relations Committee.
  • Representative Matt Rosendale of Montanaa Never Kevin who changed to “introduce” in the final vote, will continue to serve on Natural Resources.
  • Representative Chip Roy of Texaswho along with Perry helped negotiate a deal with McCarthy, will retain his seat on the Judiciary panel.
  • Freshman Rep. Keith Self, R-Texaswho switched to McCarthy on the 12th ballot, will serve on the Foreign Affairs panel.
  • Representative Victoria Spartz of Indianawho switched from “gift” to voting for McCarthy on the 12th ballot, will continue to serve on the Judiciary panel.

In addition to committee assignments, McCarthy made other concessions to his right flank. He promised Freedom Caucus members would get three seats on the loudspeaker-controlled Rules Committee, which decides exactly how bills are considered on the House floor.

In the package of rule changes that McCarthy and the Freedom Caucus negotiated for the 118th Congress, there was a clause that allowed a single legislator to force a plenary vote to remove McCarthy as spokesman.

Some Freedom Caucus members who stuck with McCarthy early on also fared well. Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., a McCarthy ally whom Democrats stripped of her committee duties two years ago, won seats on both the Oversight and Homeland Security committees.

Meanwhile, Rep. Warren Davidson of Ohio, another Freedom Caucus member and McCarthy ally, was named chairman of the Financial Services for Housing and Insurance subcommittee.

haley talbot contributed.


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