WASHINGTON (CNN) — House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said Monday he’ll be able to control his party’s right flank if he’s elected speaker, promising to change “the culture of Washington.”
Hours after announcing his run for House speaker, McCarthy told Fox News’ Bret Baier that he would be able to do what the outgoing House Speaker John Boehner, wasn’t: reel in the Republican caucus’ most conservative members who see their leaders as appeasing the Democrats and the White House.
“I want to find the most conservative solution that you can get into law, and then come back the next day with what you’re not able to,” McCarthy said. “This system is created so you can’t get 100% of what you want — I think that’s probably good.”
The California Republican is jockeying to be the next speaker after Friday’s surprise announcement from Boehner that he would resign.
The Ohio Republican recently criticized some of his party’s most conservative members — many of whom want Congress to risk a government shutdown in order to defund Planned Parenthood — as “false prophets.”
“The Bible says beware of false prophets. And there are people out there, you know, spreading noise about how much can get done. I mean this whole notion that we’re going to shut down the government to get rid of Obamacare in 2013 — this plan never had a chance,” Boehner said Sunday on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
When asked if he agreed with Boehner, McCarthy would only say that he sees himself as a “team captain,” not a “manager.”
“We need to stop governing by crisis,” he said. “It’s not going to be easy to change this culture. It won’t happen overnight, but that’s my mission.”