Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.) speaks with reporters at the U.S. Capitol on Sept. 23, 2023. | Francis Chung/POLITICO
Rep. Garret Graves has a plan to end the debate on whether Speaker Kevin McCarthy should be removed from his post: forcing a vote himself on the question of whether to remove the speaker.
Graves, a staunch ally of McCarthy, told CNN’s Manu Raju on Sunday that it was possible he would make a move to vacate the seat this week to force the hand of the speaker’s foes in the Republican caucus.
“I don’t think the speaker is even remotely concerned about some of the theatrics going on right now,” Graves (R-La.) told CNN. “As a matter of fact … I drafted a motion to vacate for the speaker as well. I’ve got it sitting on my desk right now. And I said, ‘Look, if you’re going to keep hanging this over [his] head and playing these games, let’s just do it now, let’s get it over with. Get your little games over with and then we’ll get back to the things that actually matter.’”
In January, Graves went to bat for McCarthy during the chaotic speakership battle.
Lawmakers such as Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) have called for McCarthy’s removal as speaker over the impending shutdown on Capitol Hill. Overall, McCarthy has faced attacks from fellow Republicans accusing him of failing to lead his party, which holds a slim majority in the House, through the chaos.
Graves also criticized GOP hardliners who have refused to pass a stopgap funding bill after the House last week was unable to pass legislation to fund the government.
“They’ve sort of created this quandary that we’re in right now, and it’s something that we have been trying to avoid now for months,” Graves told CNN.