While Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s allies are willing to swallow most of the concessions being made in the Republican leader's quest for speaker, they are drawing a line in the sand over one issue: committee gavels for the holdouts.
Committee and subcommittee gavels have been part of the ongoing negotiations, sources tell CNN.
But two Republicans, who both serve on the panel responsible for awarding committee assignments and gavels, predicted that the conference would reject that sort of deal — not only because there’s so much resentment toward these holdouts, but also because it would be unfair to jump someone else in line for a coveted gavel.
The GOP Steering Committee, which includes members of the leadership, elects committee chairs and panel assignments. The speaker’s vote in those decisions counts for more weight than others on the panel.
After steering makes its selection, the full conference must approve it. Traditionally, the conference accepts whatever steering decides. But these two Republicans predicted there would be rare push back if McCarthy advocated for one of the critics to get a chairmanship.
As CNN previously reported, Rep. Matt Gaetz demanded a subcommittee gavel on the House Armed Services Committee. McCarthy rejected that — Gaetz is “Never Kevin” anyway — but there are other gavels in the mix.