Idaho Rep. Raúl Labrador announced on Friday that he will run for House majority leader, taking on the pick of establishment Republicans.
But while he is positioning himself as a conservative alternative to front-runner California Rep. Kevin McCarthy, Labrador might have issues with conservatives who disagree with him on immigration reform.
“I am running for majority leader because I want to help create a vision of growth and opportunity for everyone and start getting to work for the American people,” Labrador said in a statement released by his office.
He added, “I want a House leadership team that reflects the best of our conference. A leadership team that can bring the Republican conference together. A leadership team that can help unite and grow our party. Americans don’t believe their leaders in Washington are listening and now is the time to change that.”
Some conservatives, like Iowa Rep. Steve King, have been calling for a conservative alternative to McCarthy, who like Labrador, is supportive of some immigration reform measures.
On Friday, King took to Twitter to make note of Labrador’s stance on the issue.
“#Labrador is pro amnesty,” he wrote. “If not this year, he has strongly advocated for amnesty next year.”
Labrador, born to a single mother in Puerto Rico, was elected to Congress in 2010. He was among the Republicans who voted against John Boehner for speaker last year.
After his surprising loss in his Republican primary on Tuesday night, Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor announced on Wednesday afternoon that he plans to step down as majority leader next month, though he will serve out the rest of his congressional term.
The GOP leadership quickly scheduled the leadership elections for next Thursday — something conservatives who want to shake up the current leadership structure are arguing is an unfair advantage to McCarthy.