Rep.-elect Byron Donalds told reporters Friday he trusts Kevin McCarthy to “do the job necessary” as House speaker after flipping his vote to support the California Republican.
“What I trust is that he’s gonna do the job necessary to lead our conference and lead the House of Representatives,” Donalds, R-Fla., said when Fox News Digital asked whether he can trust the House GOP leader.
“And … in this institution, trust is one of those things, to quote Ronald Reagan, that you always have to verify,” Donalds added.
Donalds said the agreement between McCarthy’s camp and members of the House Freedom Caucus, which lawmakers are still working to finalize, allows lawmakers to “verify” that trust.
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Congressman-elect Byron Donalds, a Republican from Florida, invoked Ronald Reagan when asked if he can trust Kevin McCarthy.
(Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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“And what this agreement does, it allows the members of Congress to verify the trust that we’re instilling in Kevin McCarthy. Or that I perceive we are going to instill …” he said.
McCarthy gained 15 votes from GOP holdouts in the 12th round of votes Friday but still fell short of the majority he needs to win election as House speaker. The House adjourned until 10 p.m. after the 13th vote, and McCarthy said he expects to clinch the vote then.
Donalds joined a press conference Friday afternoon with several of his colleagues who were once defectors from over 200 pro-McCarthy Republicans and switched their votes after feeling confident about an agreement on the table.
Rep.-elect Anna Paulina Luna, R-Fla., was among the 13 members who switched their votes to support McCarthy Friday, inching the House majority leader toward House speakership.
(Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
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“We’re doing this because we genuinely understand the offer on the table. … It will be transformational, and it will outlast every person in this room,” said Rep.-Elect Anna Paulina Luna, R-Fla.
Rep.-elect Chip Roy, R-Texas
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Rep.-Elect Chip Roy, R-Texas, added, “What we’ve agreed to in framework, will have … accountability. We need to be able to continue to trust that we’re going to be able to execute what we agreed to in framework.”
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The House will reconvene Friday at 10 p.m. ET for the 14th round of voting.