Indeed, for some members, the choice was between someone perceived to be a moderate Republican, McMorris Rodgers, and who would be a steady vote for leadership’s priorities, or Price, a former chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee and a member not afraid to buck leadership when a more conservative option presents itself.
Rep. Tim Huelskamp, who periodically hosts a luncheon called “Conversations with Conservatives,” said that played into his decision to support Price.
“I think he’s more conservative, from what I’ve seen,” the Kansan said. “I don’t think you pick up a single presidential vote in the next election by the gender of someone you put in there. It’s about vision, and Tom does a great job articulating the vision.”
But for those members who read the drubbing among the female demographic at the polls on Election Day as a call to include more women in leadership, the message was received.
Rep. Lynn Jenkins of Kansas won the contest to take over for McMorris Rodgers as conference vice chairwoman, meaning there are now more women in elected GOP leadership than ever. Jenkins defeated freshman Rep. Martha Roby of Alabama in the close race. Rep. Virginia Foxx of North Carolina won the conference secretary race over Rep. Jeff Denham of California.
McMorris Rodgers touted the group’s diversity in an interview following the Wednesday election.
“The Republican party has a great record when it comes to women and promoting issues that are important to woman,” she said. “We’re going to continue to champion that.”
Rep. Tim Scott of South Carolina was re-elected to be the representative to leadership from the class of 2010, making him the only African-American in GOP leadership.
Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon was elected to be the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, and Boehner announced that outgoing NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions of Texas would be appointed to helm the Rules Committee next year.
Rep. James Lankford of Oklahoma was chosen as the chairman of the Republican Policy Committee. All ran unopposed.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.