Still, some of Trump’s most loyal supporters in Congress are already signaling they won’t just automatically hand over their votes for speaker — a preview of the challenges to come for McCarthy in his hunt for the gavel.
“I’m going to be laying things on the table that I want to see changed over time, and then we’ll see what happens and see if anyone else is running,” Greene told reporters before the recess.
Rep. Chip Roy of Texas, who recently tangled with McCarthy during a private GOP conference meeting, has also had some strong words for the Republican leadership: “There’s a growing sense in the conference generally, not just the Freedom Caucus, that we need to fight. … We need to step on the gas.”
The threat of a rebellion from McCarthy’s right flank, which denied him the speakership once before, has led McCarthy to execute a delicate balancing act. Last week, he was facing blowback from conservatives for not punishing the 13 House Republicans who voted for a bipartisan infrastructure law.