Steve Bannon and Boris Epshteyn brought this up on today’s program. (I’ll try to post the segment here later). My take? Kevin McCarthy is weak, he lies, and he has cheated on his wife with another former member of Congress (who went back to her home state in shame to repair what was left of her marriage), and his character is wanting. He is unsuited and undeserving of being House Speaker when the Republicans take the House in November.

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From THE HILL’s MORNING REPORT:

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has a Trump problem.

Late Thursday night, audio emerged of McCarthy on Jan. 10, 2021 saying he considered asking former President Trump to resign in the wake of the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show” aired the audio, which was from a conversation between McCarthy and Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) only hours after the GOP leader denied that the conversation ever took place.

In the audio clip, Cheney asks McCarthy if he was hearing that Trump might resign or had any reason to believe it could happen. 

“The only discussion I would have with him is that I think this will pass, and it would be my recommendation you should resign. I mean, that would be my take but I don’t think he would take it. But I don’t know,” McCarthy says, referring to the likelihood that Congress would impeach the then-outgoing president (The Hill). “What he did is unacceptable. Nobody can defend that and nobody should defend it.”

In a statement released Thursday morning after a report by The New York Times’ Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns (now with a link to the audio) drawn from their new book, McCarthy denied them outright, saying the report was “totally false and wrong.”

“It comes as no surprise that the corporate media is obsessed with doing everything it can to further a liberal agenda. This promotional book tour is no different. If the reporters were interested in truth why would they ask for comment after the book was printed?” McCarthy added.

McCarthy’s office did not respond to The Hill’s request for comment by press time. A Cheney spokesman declined to comment.

The latest development is likely to pose major trouble for McCarthy moving forward, especially in his years-long quest to ascend to the speakership if Republicans win the House majority in November. The California Republican has staked much of his political future on his ties to the former president, now an ally and a major fundraiser for the House GOP. 

If Trump ditched his support for McCarthy, it wouldn’t be the first time he’s discarded a Republican candidate in search of what he considers greener pastures. Last month, Trump rescinded his endorsement of Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) for an open Alabama Senate seat. Brooks was one of Trump’s most outspoken supporters in the push to overturn the 2020 election results. 

In other words, McCarthy’s political future and the road to 218 go through Trump. For argument’s sake, if Republicans were to win 24 seats in the midterm elections, bringing them to a total of 233 seats overall, only 16 Republicans who are loyal to Trump would have to break ranks to deny McCarthy the speakership if Trump moves against the GOP leader.

Initial comments from House Republicans have been scarce since the audio posted. Lawmakers are in recess until Tuesday (unless, of course, Trump speaks out). However, Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-Texas) offered a word of support for the minority leader.

Gonzales tweeted, “29 wks from now Republicans will have the majority and Kevin McCarthy will be Speaker of the House.”

A reminder: Days after the Capitol riot, McCarthy said in a public statement that “the president bears responsibility” for the deadly attack, adding “these facts require immediate action from President Trump, accept his share of responsibility, quell the brewing unrest and ensure President-elect Biden is successfully able to begin his term.”

The New York TimesDonald Trump Jr. plans to meet with Jan. 6 committee.