McCarthy Endorses Trump for President 12/09 07:47
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Retiring Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the ousted
former House speaker, said he is endorsing Donald Trump for president and would
consider serving in his Cabinet if the GOP front-runner were to win back the
McCarthy had a rocky relationship with the former president, notably when he
declined to publicly support Trump's bid for a second term, despite being one
of his earliest and most loyal allies. But they always seem to patch things up,
and as McCarthy prepares to leave Congress he gave his nod.
"I will support the president. I will support President Trump," McCarthy
said in excerpts of an interview to air this weekend on "CBS News Sunday
McCarthy has not disclosed his post-Congress plans, but asked if he would
willing to serve in a Trump cabinet, he said, "In the right position, look, if,
if I'm the best person for the job, yes."
"Look, I worked with President Trump on a lot of policies. I, we, worked
together to win the majority," he told CBS' Robert Costa in the interview, his
first to air on TV since announcing he will leave Congress. "But we also have a
relationship where we're very honest with one another."
GOP lawmakers, even those who have opposed Trump strongly at times, are
swiftly falling in line behind the party's presumed nominee, as they brush past
and ignore some of his more alarming authoritarian rhetoric.
McCarthy, as he led the House's slim GOP majority, had withheld his support
for Trump as tried to keep a more neutral air and fundraise from wealthy
donors, some of whom have soured on the former president.
Also mindful that a number of rank-and-file lawmakers come from
congressional districts that President Joe Biden won, McCarthy held back his
endorsement so as not to put them in a political bind.
But McCarthy, who depended on Trump's backing to become speaker after a
grueling 15-vote spectacle in January, has often made his way back to Trump.
In the aftermath of the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol by Trump
supporters, McCarthy at first called it one of the saddest days he had
experienced in Congress, putting the blame on the former president -- only to
dash to Trump's Mar-a-Lago club in Florida weeks later to mend the relationship.
McCarthy was ousted as House speaker in October by his hard-right
detractors, including some of Trump's most loyal allies among the House GOP.