House Republicans voted for new No. 2 and No.3 leaders today. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) ascended Thursday to the majority leader role being vacated by Eric Cantor (R-Va.), and Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) won the race for majority whip. Check here for the latest updates.
Rep. Steve Scalise’s election hardly calms the fears of many conservatives that the House leadership remains a more centrist group than the base of the party.
At 4 p.m., immediately following the leadership elections, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) sent an email to a large group of conservative House Republicans, inviting them to meet with him on June 24 for an “off the record gathering” and “an evening of discussion and fellowship.” Paul Teller, a Cruz adviser and former House staffer who clashed with Scalise while working at the Republicans Study Committee, is organizing the meeting. Pizza will be served.
Cruz, who was a player in last year’s federal government shutdown, has previously worked with several House members and urged them to pressure Boehner and Cantor to push a hardline conservative agenda.
Meanwhile, some conservatives criticized Scalise and McCarthy’s success and played down Scalise’s reputation as a voice for the House’s right flank.
“The bad news is that the two winning candidates, McCarthy and Scalise, are business-as-usual, go-along-to-get-along Washington insiders,” said Richard Viguerie, a longtime conservative activist. “The gap between the leadership of the Republican Party and the base of the party continues to widen.”
Richard Viguerie sends stmt, slamming Scalise and McCarthy; Cruz plans pizza mtg w/ righty House crew. Unrest continues.
Also on Cruz's invite to hardline House members: "Pizza will be served."
Who sent the invites on Cruz's behalf? None other than Paul Teller, a top Cruz adviser who clashed w/ SCALISE at RSC.
From invite: "Senator Cruz invites your Member to an off-the-record gathering for an evening of discussion and fellowship, 7pm, June 24."
SCOOP: Immediately after the leadership results were official, TED CRUZ sent an invite to House conservatives to meet w/ him
Just ask his roommates, Reps. John Shimkus (R-Ill.) and Kevin Brady (R-Tex.):
— John Shimkus (@RepShimkus) June 19, 2014