‘We’re smart’: US Republican female candidates stay out of speaker race

WASHINGTON, Oct 25 (Reuters) – Three weeks of confusion over who will lead the U.S. House of Representatives’ Republican caucus have left women members sidelined.

Some say it was a deliberate choice to avoid a brutal fight that has left many of the group’s top leaders politically vulnerable.

“We’re smart,” said Kathy McMorris Rodgers, a former chairwoman of the Republican National Convention.

Since a small group of party hardliners engineered the impeachment of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Oct. 3, the caucus has held one round of votes. Out of which 14 members failed to secure 217 votes. Committee with a narrow majority of 221-212.

Women make up 15% of House Republican voting members — compared to 43% of House Democrats — and none are running for speaker.

McCarthy succeeds Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, who became the first woman to step down from her leadership role after the party lost its majority in the November 2022 elections.

Room no. 4 Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York, who has yet to run for higher office, is standing by as others try and fail to unite factions of the party.

“Republican women are too smart to engage in the shenanigans of the last few weeks,” Rep. Kate Cammack said Tuesday.

Only one House Ford received votes — Rep. Kay Granger, who was nominated by fellow Congresswoman Marianette Miller-Meeks.

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“It’s a missed opportunity, but why should we be subject to this?” Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer said.

Rep. Nicole Malliotakis put it even more bluntly: “Men have egos, women have brains.”

Report by Moira Warburton; Editing by Scott Malone and Stephen Coates

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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