The U.S. House of Representatives remains leaderless, but that could all change this week.

Northern Missouri Congressman Sam Graves said he’s “extremely disappointed” and frustrated by the vote to remove California Congressman Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the U.S. House. Graves, the senior member of the Missouri Congressional delegation, did not foresee a successful vote to oust McCarthy.

“I didn’t,” Graves told Missourinet affiliate KFEQ in St. Joseph. “I really didn’t. And you know, I’ve seen a lot in my time in Washington – a lot of historic moments but this wasn’t one that I did not see coming and it’s unfortunate. It’s unfortunate for the country.”

Graves backs Scalise, the House Majority Leader, saying Scalise would be able to maintain the momentum created by McCarthy. Though Graves said he is friends with all of those attempting to succeed McCarthy.

“It’s a mess at the moment,” he said. “We’re going through this process of picking a new speaker and everybody’s kind of, you know, jockeying for that position and making calls on the two front runners being Jim Jordan and Steve Scalise.”

Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz, a fellow Republican, led the charge to have McCarthy removed.

“He’s (Gaetz) just got a personal vendetta against Kevin McCarthy and that’s what this was all about. It’s a personal vendetta against Kevin and he was willing to do anything he could to hurt him,” said Graves.

According to Graves, former President Donald Trump announcing support for Jordan as speaker is having mixed results.

“I’ve talked to people that as a result of the president endorsing him now they’re no longer you know, supporting Jim. And you know, the flip side to that is some now have come over to Jim’s side, so it’ll be interesting to see how that, you know, how that works out within the conference and if it will have an impact.”

Graves said the House Republican Caucus must overcome the disruption, settle on the next speaker, and get back to business.

Story by Brent Martin, of Missourinet affiliate KFEQ in St. Joseph

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