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McCarthy Opponent Byron Donalds Gives ‘Phenomenal’ Answer to Reporter’s ‘Threats’ Question: ‘I’m 6-2, 275’

In a political world in which sound bites often define character, Republican Rep. Byron Donalds of Florida issued one with teeth Wednesday when asked about his opposition to electing Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California as speaker of the House. Surrounded by media representatives outside of the Capitol, Donalds was asked if he was worried about “threats” and retribution” for turning against McCarthy, who if elected as speaker could exact political vengeance in terms of committee assignments. “Man, I’m 6-2, 275; I’m not worried about that,” Donalds shot back. Many watching the spectacle of multiple rounds of voting in which McCarthy failed to secure enough support to be elected speaker finally heard something in which to rejoice, calling the comment “phenomenal” and Donalds a “legend.” Donalds emerged in the political limelight Tuesday when, after supporting McCarthy for the first two rounds of votes, he turned against the California congressman. On Wednesday, Donalds was nominated for the speakership by dissident Republicans. In nominating him on Wednesday, Republican Rep. Chip Roy of Texas said, “This country needs a change. This country needs leadership that does not reflect this city, this town that is badly broken,” according to The Associated Press. Donalds received 20 votes Wednesday, compared with the 201 GOP votes cast for McCarthy. All 212 Democrats are backing Democratic Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York. [firefly_poll] During her speech nominating Donalds during the fifth vote for speaker, Republican Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado said the job of House Republicans “is not to coronate the biggest fundraiser or rubberstamp the status quo or keep on going along to get along. It’s to use our votes to elect a speaker who will enable us to get our country back on track.” Speaking outside the Capitol, Donalds called the two days of wrangling “an invigorating day for America” and said, “There’s a lot of members in the chamber who want to have serious conversations about how we can bring this all to a close and elect a speaker.” “Once we get this organized and figured out, we’ll get back to business. It’s only Day Two, y’all. Settle down. We’re going to be all right,” he said. Donalds told Fox News that the larger issue at play is changing the direction of official Washington. “For too long in the nation’s capital, people have gone along with the next wave of leadership. And that’s not an anti-Kevin McCarthy statement. That is a statement about what a deliberative open process means for the constitutional republic that is the United States of America,” he said. Donalds noted that one thing McCarthy’s opponents want is a rule allowing any single member to be able to trigger a vote removing the speaker. “Any member that wants to be a leader should not be afraid of that,” he said. “The rules matter in how you govern this place. Once we elect a speaker, the rules are going to dictate how the House functions and that goes directly to the ability of us accomplishing solutions that everybody wants to see here on Capitol Hill,” Donalds said. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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