As the chaos and dysfunction within the House Republican caucus brings the country closer and closer to a now almost inevitable government shutdown, Rep. Tim Burchett (R-TN) praised former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) for her leadership and ability to keep her caucus together when she held the gavel.
When asked in an interview with CNN Thursday whether he still supports Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) amid the looming shutdown crisis, Burchett said he has “questions” and “doubts” about it.
“We need leadership,” he said, later citing Pelosi as an example.
“I don’t agree with her ever, hardly on anything,” Burchett said. “But she was pretty successful. The way she did it was: she put an issue out … she met with them, she figured out what they wanted, and then they put it on the floor. And they passed it and they rallied around it. A lot of work goes into that.”
“But we’re not seeing that. I’m not seeing that work right now,” Burchett added, pointing the finger at McCarthy. “And it’s very disappointing to me.”
Burchett also said that despite being on the opposite end of the aisle politically, the two are friends. He explained they have family members with similar names, and that Pelosi often asks about his daughter who was injured last year in a horse riding incident.
The remarks come after a week of chaos within McCarthy’s caucus, as he failed to get a handful of far-right members to cooperate and pass basic spending bills supported by the rest of Republicans. McCarthy’s speakership is increasingly coming into question. Unable to get his party in line, the House speaker may decide to work with Democrats to avoid a shutdown, a move that would almost certainly result in hardliners filing a motion to oust him as speaker.