If McCarthy does become Speaker, the infighting offers a preview of just how challenging his job could be — and of the difficulty a divided House GOP might have in governing. The more narrow the margin, the tougher McCarthy’s job likely would be.
McCarthy tends to prefer trying to smooth over problems within his conference behind the scenes; he doesn’t like publicly condemning fellow GOP lawmakers, which also risks alienating them as well as their allies…
Rep. Tom Reed (N.Y.), one of the 13 House Republicans who came under fire for their infrastructure votes, said that GOP leaders should make more clear that rhetoric like Boebert’s is unacceptable.
“Well, I think when you’re in a position of leadership, you have to stand up. You have to deal with it. I appreciate the fact that Kevin called our colleague directly to discuss the matter with her. But at some point in time, you also have to stand up and just call it out for what it is. This type of rhetoric cannot be condoned. It cannot be upheld,” Reed said on CNN.
Yet alienating far-right members who are closely allied with Trump also carries risks for McCarthy.