First 100 Days | New NY 23rd

He’s (McCarthy) performed better than I thought he would.–Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ)

McCarthy will always have little wiggle room. He will have to walk a tightrope.–Jeffery A. Jenkins, Professor of Public Policy at USC

Lisa Mascaro, writing for the Associated Press, in an article printed in the Elmira Star Gazette, discusses Kevin McCarthy’s first 100 days as Speaker.

The first 100 days became a benchmark for a new Presidential Administration and for Congress with FDR’s Administration, when 15 major pieces of New Deal legislation were passed in the first 100 days. The Speaker in 1932 was John Nance Garner III.

Lisa Mascaro claims that as Speaker McCarthy has had some successes. She mentions these:

  • The House has “passed dozens of bills,” but many of them are political theater, doomed to die in the Senate or be vetoed.
  • “politically potent efforts targeting crime and the COVID-19 pandemic,” specifically a bill to overturn a resolution of the local government of Washington, D.C. and a law to end the national emergency due to COVID-19.
  • “opened the Capitol more fully to visitors.”
  • Met with President Tsai ing-wen of Taiwan.

McCarthy himself claims these and more. On the other hand Mascaro notes:

McCarthy has been unable to steer House Republicans to start delivering on broader pursuits–the GOP promises for border security or budget cuts to prevent a debt ceiling crisis, for starters.

I find Mascaro’s statement on the debt ceiling muddled–budget cuts have nothing to do with the debt ceiling other than as a proposed quid pro quo for raising or repealing it.

More to the point, I think, the GOP hasn’t reached consensus on a way to address these and other pressing issues. Instead Republicans have focused on reiterating their partisan talking points. McCarthy will have to “walk a tightrope;” he will have to walk faster to meet deadlines for “must pass” legislation.

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