The path for Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) to follow through on his promise to boot various Democratic House members off their committees was complicated on Tuesday when, according to Axios, one member of his caucus came out against the idea: Indiana Congresswoman Victoria Spartz.
"Spartz, in a statement, cited her votes in 2021 against kicking Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) off their committees," reported Andrew Solender. "'Two wrongs do not make a right. Speaker Pelosi took unprecedented actions last Congress to remove Reps. Greene and Gosar from their committees without proper due process,' she said. 'As I spoke against it on the House floor two years ago, I will not support this charade again.'" This comes after Reps. Nancy Mace (R-SC) and David Valadao (R-CA) also expressed opposition to McCarthy's plan.
Two House Democrats McCarthy has pledged to remove, California Reps. Eric Swalwell and Adam Schiff from the House Intelligence Committee, can be done unilaterally without a vote, due to that committee's rules. But a third Democrat, Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar, would require a full vote of the House to remove her from the Foreign Affairs Committee, where Spartz would have a say.
McCarthy has a majority of less than half a dozen members, meaning any more defections would likely sink the bid to sanction Omar specifically.
"That vote could come as soon as this week: House Democrats’ steering committee is meeting Tuesday evening to recommend committee assignments," said the report. "Compounding matters for Republicans is that Rep. Greg Steube (R-Fla.) has said he will be out of D.C. for 'several weeks' as he recovers from injuries sustained from falling off a ladder."
Greene was expelled from her committee assignments in 2021 following reports that she endorsed the execution of prominent members of Congress on social media. Gosar was censured and stripped of his assignments later that year after he attended a white nationalist convention and posted an anime video of himself murdering Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) with a sword.
Analysts have panned McCarthy's excuses to do the same for various Democratic members. He has pledged to remove Omar over incendiary statements about Israel that were widely considered anti-Semitic, for which she later apologized. He is removing Swalwell over the fact that he was targeted by a Chinese spy for information over a decade ago, even though he has never been accused of any wrongdoing in that incident, and removing Schiff over a vague and unsubstantiated allegation that he lied about whether he knew the identity of the whistleblower who exposed former President Donald Trump's attempts to extort the president of Ukraine.