Several Republican House Freedom Caucus members released a letter Thursday identifying key rule and policy changes they would like to see the speaker of the House adopt as the 118th Congress is formed, saying there must be a “check” on the “swamp” and reform of the “status quo.”
The caucus called for bills that are focused, amendable and readable; conservative representation on committees and among chairs; a halting of Republican leaders being involved in primary elections; and limitations on spending, according to the letter obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation. The letter labeled the House of Representatives as the people’s voice in government, stating that leadership is required to limit the power of the executive branch, push the Senate to act, and responsibly exercise the power of the purse.
Furthermore, the letter called for the implementation of “must-pass” legislation to check the Biden administration and the formation of “Church commission-style” committees to “target weaponized government.” [Editor’s note: The latter is a reference to the Church committee (chaired by then-Sen. Frank Church, D-Idaho), a U.S. Senate select committee in 1975 that investigated abuses by the CIA, FBI, IRS, and National Security Agency. ]
“The House leadership of both parties has increasingly centralized decision-making power around fewer and fewer individuals—at the expense of deliberation and input by the body,” the representatives wrote in the letter. “This results in massive, multi-subject bills that are unable to be amended or fully read, all driven by supposedly must-pass defense and appropriations measures. In the process, we’ve amassed trillions of dollars in debt, empowered administration bureaucrats who target citizens, and failed to carry out our basic duties to defend the American people.”
Referencing recent close elections, the representatives stated redistricting and election procedures were not the only reasons for close results, and further highlighted a need to demonstrate a “sense of urgency” that Americans feel in response to a “status quo” existing in Washington.
“We must fight for a bold agenda that will win hearts and minds, but much more importantly, change how we do things to produce results and not excuses. The American people send us to Washington to do what we said we would do,” the letter said.
In November, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy won the GOP nomination for speaker of the House in a 188-31 vote. McCarthy will need 218 members to support him in January to secure the speakership.
Alongside McCarthy, Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona announced that he would be running for speaker of the House, saying it is time for new leadership. Biggs on Thursday called for Republicans to drop McCarthy as the party’s nominee for speaker of the House.
“We need to make a change in trajectory, a change of path, a change in process, a change of procedure, a change in policy,” Biggs told “America Reports” host John Roberts on Fox News. “All of those are not going to happen with the current leadership.”
Biggs “supports all HFC rules process proposal changes,” Matthew Tragesser, communications director for Biggs, told the Daily Caller News Foundation in response to the letter.
The letter was signed by Reps. Scott Perry of Pennsylvania, Chip Roy of Texas, Dan Bishop of North Carolina, Andrew Clyde of Georgia, Paul Gosar and Eli Crane of Arizona, and Rep.-Elect Andy Ogles of Tennessee.
McCarthy did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.
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