Kevin Brady backs Kevin McCarthy as next speaker of the House

June 1, 2018 GMT

House Ways and Means Chairman Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas threw his support behind his Republican colleague from California, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, to be the next speaker of the House on Friday.

Mr. McCarthy is rumored to be the top replacement for Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who plans to retire from Congress after the election in November.

“I think Kevin has, McCarthy, has done a terrific job throughout this country and throughout our caucus, and he deserves a chance to move into that position,” Mr. Brady told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt. “And what I appreciate among our leadership right now is no one is distracted by this potential speaker’s race in November. We’re all focused on delivering for the American people. That’s the right thing to do.”

Majority Whip Steve Scalise, Louisiana Republican, is also seen as a contender to fill Mr. Ryan’s place if Mr. McCarthy can’t get the 218 votes needed to secure the speakership. He considered running for the position when former House Speaker John Boehner left office, but was discouraged from doing so.

Meanwhile, conservative pressure groups have urged Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio to run for the top spot. Mr. Jordan is a founding member of the conservative Freedom Caucus.