Kevin McCarthy on His Decision to Step Away: 'I Hope That My Choice Will Help Heal the Wounds'

The Illinois State Capitol Building as seen looking west from the grounds of the Illinois Supreme Court Building. This State
The Illinois State Capitol Building as seen looking west from the grounds of the Illinois Supreme Court Building. This State Capitol Building houses the offices of the Governor, Lt. Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Comptroller, and Treasurer, as well as the House of Representatives and Senate Chambers. The State General Assembly first met here in 1877, although parts of the building remained under construction until 1888. At 361 feet, the Illinois State Capitol Building is the tallest of all domed capitols in the United States.

Answer by Kevin McCarthy, Majority Leader and Congressman (R-CA), U.S. House of Representatives, on Quora:

When I said that my leadership style is based on listening, I meant it. You may have trouble believing this — I truly didn't seek public office to be someone, but to do something for our country.

I know people are angry at Congress. I know people are frustrated by Washington's seeming inability to do the work that you send people there to do. I know people are skeptical of anything an elected official has to say. To be completely candid, I understand why you feel that way, because I feel the same way.

I truly believe that we are here as public servants; our job is to work for you — period. Your public servants should not be here to gain power or positions; we should be here to do what's best for our country.

House Republicans need a new leader that can unite them, and after many days of talking with my colleagues, it became clear that I would not be that person. The selection of a new Speaker can never be about a single person, it must be about doing what's right for the country.

We need a new start — a fresh face who can bring Congress together. I hope that my choice will help heal the wounds that are keeping well-meaning people from finding common cause for our country.

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