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 June 14, 2023

Freedom Caucus member on centrist colleagues: 'Go back to drinking'

There seems to be a growing rift, at times, within the ranks of House Republicans.

According to the Washington Examiner, that was put on display last week when conservatives on the House Freedom Caucus held up Speaker Kevin McCarthy's (R-CA) agenda in retaliation for the debit limit deal he made with President Joe Biden.

Members of the Freedom Caucus rebuked some of their Republican colleagues this week after it was reported that some of the centrist Republicans were angered at how easily McCarthy's agenda was stalled by the small, but powerful group of Freedom Caucus members.

Rep. Mike Lawler (R-NY) was one of the more moderate Republicans upset with the power of the Freedom Caucus and their alleged "power sharing" agreement with Speaker McCarthy.

"You have a conference of 222 people," Lawler said Tuesday morning.

He added: "And they would all be well advised to remember that they are one vote,” he continued. “The power of the conference resides in the fact that we have a majority. The majority was delivered by people in swing districts.”

Freedom Caucus member Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO) wasn't concerned whatsoever regarding the thought of his Republican House colleague.

"I think they need to go back to drinking," Buck said.

The Examiner noted:

Rep. Bob Good (R-VA) said the members who are upset at the Freedom Caucus “ought to be more conservative,” and he believes the country and the Republican Conference “would be much better off the more influence the Freedom Caucus has.”

There has been a growing concern regarding the intra-party tension and spats, especially as Republicans will have to soon band together ahead of the 2024 election.

The party can't afford, optically and politically, to be split apart by such unusually wide divides.

The Examiner added:

Members of leadership are attempting to squash tensions between the factions of the House Republican Conference, and they’re trying to get everyone together to work through it.

“Last week, there was anger expressed on all the sides of the conference, but we've been working through it,” House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) said.

Only time will tell if Republicans determine a viable path forward to work together on bigger-picture legislative items. Republican voters will overwhelmingly expect no less.

Written By:
Ryan Ledendecker

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