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Freedom Caucus Members May Exit Republican Study Committee

Image: Freedom Caucus Members May Exit Republican Study Committee

(J. Scott Applewhite/AP)

By    |   Monday, 29 Aug 2016 03:24 PM

Some members of the Freedom Caucus in the House of Representatives are pondering whether they might leave the Republican Study Committee in the next Congress, according to the Daily Signal.

The Freedom Caucus's 40 members have clashed with the committee over tactics that they use when pushing for conservative legislation.

"Certainly there are HFC members who will not join RSC in the new Congress," Rep. Mark Meadows told the Hill. Meadows, one of the Freedom Caucus' founders, said that he does not plain to join.

Nine lawmakers formed the Freedom Caucus in January 2015, amid their feeling that the RSC had gotten too aligned with Republican leadership. The group now numbers around 40, The Hill reports.

The Freedom Caucus gains leverage by voting as a bloc. For example, if 40 members of the Caucus were to vote against a bill, that would prevent Republican leaders from gaining the 218 minimum votes required to pass a vote without Democrats.

The RSC has 178 members, more than 70 percent of the 247-member House Republican delegation.

Its executive director Scott Parkinson downplayed the idea that as many as 20 from the Freedom Caucus might exit.

"We are confident that we're going to have a very, very large membership heading into the next Congress," Parkinson said.

The election for chairman of the group is set for Nov. 17, but any lawmaker who wants to vote in that election for chairman must renew their RSC membership first.

The Daily Signal reported that Rep. Mark Walker of North Carolina and Maryland Rep. Andy Harris could be planning on running for the chairmanship.

The move could lead to a split between the hard-line conservative Freedom Caucus and other influential conservatives in the House, according to the Hill.

One aide said that Harris as chairman might be an incentive for Freedom Caucus members to remain, the Daily Signal reported.

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Some members of the Freedom Caucus in the House of Representatives are pondering whether they might leave the Republican Study Committee in the next Congress, according to the Daily Signal.
freedom caucus, members, exit, republican study committee
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2016-24-29
Monday, 29 Aug 2016 03:24 PM
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