Tags: Immigration | Republican Study Committee | RSC | vote | leadership

Vote on RSC Leadership Looms Large

By    |   Monday, 17 Nov 2014 02:05 PM

House Republicans will hold a critical leadership election Tuesday, as GOP lawmakers choose who will lead the Republican Study Committee (RSC) during the 114th Congress a decision that could shape the party’s direction during the next two years on hot-button issues like immigration and federal spending.

Since it was founded in the 1970s, the RSC has functioned as a research group for House conservatives and a de facto lobby which can bring pressure to bear on Republican leaders not to stray from conservative principles.

The three Republicans competing for the post are Rep. Mick Mulvaney, a South Carolina lawmaker who is the apparent frontrunner, and two Texas congressmen: Reps. Bill Flores and Louie Gohmert.

While all three are regarded as conservatives, there are important substantive and style differences between them.

In an interview with the National Journal, Flores said he is "not a bomb-thrower" and would seek to establish a relationship with House leadership focused more on collaboration than on conflict.

Mulvaney, by contrast emphasized his willingness to challenge GOP leaders, saying that the role of the RSC is "not to buddy up to leadership."

He added that he would also take on conservative groups as well when he felt it necessary.

Mulvaney was apparently referring to organizations like the Club for Growth and Heritage Action, which have angered House GOP leaders in recent years by urging members to vote against the farm bill and other compromise measures many conservatives believed were too expensive.

In the waning hours of the campaign, immigration has been emerging as what may be the most contentious issue in the RSC race.

Earlier this year, Mulvaney held a meeting entirely in Spanish with Latino voters in his South Carolina district, where he said that he and other conservative Republicans were open to some form of legal status for illegal immigrants.

Flores said that many of his constituents favor legal status and other measures that would permit illegals to come "out of the shadows," the National Journal reported.

Gohmert chastised Flores and Mulvaney for favoring amnesty, warning that if either man became RSC chief it would send the wrong message on immigration.

"Louie is a member of the ship-them-home-in-boxcars caucus, and I respect that," Mulvaney said. He and Flores said that whoever won the RSC election would have to represent the views of the conference as a whole.

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House Republicans will hold a critical leadership election Tuesday, as GOP lawmakers choose who will lead the Republican Study Committee (RSC) during the 114th Congress - a decision that could shape the party's direction during the next two years on hot-button issues.
Republican Study Committee, RSC, vote, leadership
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2014-05-17
Monday, 17 Nov 2014 02:05 PM
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