Freedom Caucus member Rep. Tim Huelskamp told CNN’s Dana Bash that he was “very shocked” upon hearing of Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s withdrawal from the House speaker race Thursday. (RELATED: McCarthy Shocks Republicans, Drops Out Of Speaker Race)
HUELSKAMP: We’re very shocked. Kevin McCarthy said ‘I am not the one.’ He understood he wasn’t the one to pull 218 votes together, but the House Tea Party Caucus and the House Freedom Caucus members, we’re going to sit down and at this meeting and talk about where we’re going from here … We’re looking for a speaker who works with conservatives instead of against us, and we presumed Kevin would reach out to us and say ‘What do we need to do? What changes do we need to make?’ We were stunned. I think his strongest supporters were stunned.