House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said Thursday that his main focus is not on succeeding House Speaker Paul Ryan, but on keeping their party in the majority after the midterms later this year.
"What means most to me is that in the next Congress there is an opportunity for a Republican to be speaker, and not [California Democratic Rep.] Nancy Pelosi," McCarthy said on Fox News clips after being asked about whether he might replace Ryan, who announced he would not run for reelection on Wednesday.
"We have the highest number of retirements we've ever had, we have the history against us when it comes to the party in power that wins the White House and losing seats here, but we've accomplished a lot," he said.
The congressman added that the GOP has “got a lot more to do in the Trump agenda, so I'm doubling down and focusing, putting this conference together as one team, and making sure we keep this majority and moving America in the right direction."
Ryan cited a desire to spend more time with his children, now teenagers, as his reason for leaving Congress.
"I have respect for the man that cares about his family all the way," McCarthy said.
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