House Minority Leader Says Pelosi Will Lose Speaker Gavel: ‘It Only Takes 19 Seats’

October 30, 2019 Updated: October 30, 2019

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) warned that Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) undoing will be the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

“She’s going to [lose her power],” McCarthy said on Fox News on Wednesday.

He explained: “It only takes 19 seats to win the majority. They have 31 Democrats sitting in seats that President Trump carried. And we’re going to carry those again. But what’s more important here, watch the Democrats as they now approve of impeachment every time they get a primary opponent.”

“Watch Max Rose, congressman, who said impeachment was wrong,” he added. “Now he’s changed the entire system—that you’re not innocent until proven guilty.”

McCarthy also singled out House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) and said the impeachment inquiry that he is leading has been a distraction for legislators.

“Adam Schiff … lied to the American public [about] not knowing about the whistleblower,” he said. “He put us through a two-year nightmare with millions of dollars spent. And the worst part about all of this … [the] government is not funded.”

“Our military is not getting their pay raise. Prescription drug prices are not being lowered,” McCarthy added. “The agreement with Mexico and Canada, our number one and number two traders, are not ratified, while we’re sitting down talking to China—our number three trader. We are making America weaker just because [Democrats] dislike this president.”

During a fundraiser on Tuesday in Washington, D.C., Trump backed McCarthy for Speaker of the House.

“We need to win back the House to retire Nancy once and for all,” Trump told the attendees, according to a report.

The comments come after Democrats unveiled the text of a resolution that lays out basic procedures for public hearings on the impeachment inquiry. Republican lawmakers and Trump have accused the Democrats of carrying out the inquiry by secret depositions and leaking information to the media.

The unveiled measure (pdf) calls on “certain committees to continue their ongoing investigations as part of the existing House of Representatives inquiry into whether sufficient grounds exist for the House of Representatives to exercise its Constitutional power to impeach Donald John Trump, President of the United States of America, and for other purposes.”

Rep. Adam Schiff
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Chairman of the House Select Committee on Intelligence, speaks at a press conference at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Oct. 8, 2019. (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

In a statement on Tuesday night, the White House criticized Democrats and Pelosi over the move.

“The White House is barred from participating at all, until after Chairman Schiff conducts two rounds of one-sided hearings to generate a biased report for the Judiciary Committee. Even then, the White House’s rights remain undefined, unclear, and uncertain—because those rules still haven’t been written,” the White House said.