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It's Time for McCarthy and Donalds to Actually Lead

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

With a small majority finding a way forward in picking a House Speaker who can unite the party has become a frustrating challenge. The sides seemed locked into their positions as roll call after roll call remain essentially the same. Is there a way to a solution that allows the GOP to begin delivering on the promises they all say they support? There must be.


Real leaders lead. They put their mission above ego and do whatever they can to deliver on the mission they say they support. All the parties now involved in the impasse say that they support the same key priorities and want to get on with doing the business of Congress.

After the Fox News hosts John Roberts and Sandra Smith grilled Republican Rep. Byron Donalds of Florida over the challenge to Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy's bid to be speaker of the House of Representatives. Donalds made a thoughtful response that needs to be considered: "Let be very clear, Republican voters have not been happy with party leadership across the board.... These leadership challenges are a good thing for the party and they're actually a good thing for America. The days of just power by acclimation, those days are over. It needs to be earned and that's the thing people need to understand and be communicated effectively."

I would challenge both Rep. Donalds and Rep. McCarthy to earn the label of leader. It's time for them to come together and find a solution. Let me suggest one for them to consider.

As has been stated publicly, the House Speaker does not need to be current House member. I suggest both leaders consider nominating a compromise interim Speaker of the House that both are willing to bring to the floor for consideration. It's time to consider bringing back the former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich. Instead of either leader withdrawing their name, by both making the same nomination, they would be coming together in support of unity and the mission they both support.


Why would McCarthy do such a thing? Sometimes you have to let go of what you crave to get what you want. By setting aside his own appointment he would show leadership. He would be putting unity and the mission first. He could couch his nomination of Gingrich on the need to move forward to find a way out of the impasse by sacrificing for now his own dream. By nominating Gingrich, he would be nominating a proven, respected leader that could easily be positioned as an interim, transition speaker. At some point in the future, after demonstrating his faithful support of in helping to deliver on the party's campaign promises, Kevin McCarthy might very well earn the trust to eventually be selected.

Emotions are raw, and the blaming and name calling are escalating. Both Republican factions need to find ways to save face and still unite to support the issues that matter most. Rep. Donalds can bring this compromise to those refusing to support McCarthy and explain reasons why all should support this interim compromise. There are few people with the resume and respect to justify a unanimous GOP vote for speaker.

Gingrich is a proven Speaker of the House who was able to help craft and deliver the Contract with America and work with Democrat President Bill Clinton. He is still up to date on issues as a frequent analyst on Fox News. He knows how to make the House of Representatives work and would have the respect of all the GOP representatives voting.


Until both McCarthy and Donalds are able to let go of having to win the day, a solution is unlikely. If Newt Gingrich is willing to serve, he could position himself as an interim speaker willing to serve to get started on delivering on the current mission priorities all support. He could agree to serve until House Republicans could come together to affirm a new speaker with the support needed.   

In the recent election, a new contract with America was presented by Kevin McCarthy and Republican leadership. Speaker Gingrich has a history of delivering and driving change. By bringing him back until members can unify behind one candidate, they can get busy delivering what they promised with a leader who has proven he can get it done.     


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