U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Spokane Wednesday won the No. 4 leadership post among House Republicans, beating back a last-minute challenger backed by several influential conservatives.
McMorris Rodgers was named chair of the House Republican Conference in a secret-ballot contest. She was vice chair.
McMorris Rodgers defeated Tom Price of Georgia, who was endorsed by vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan of Wisconsin as well as Jeb Hensarling of Texas, McMorris Rodgers’ predecessor as conference chair.
McMorris Rodgers was the choice of House Speaker John Boehner. Some observers depicted Price as a choice for more conservative direction in the House, although he and McMorris Rodgers hold largely similar positions on the budget, health-care reform, abortion and other key issues.
McMorris Rodgers issued the following statement:
“I want to thank my colleagues for showing their trust and confidence in me and what we can do together as a Conference to advance positive, constructive solutions for the American people. We are united by our conservative principles, a spirit of reform to return America to prosperity and a recognition that we must do better as a Conference to deliver our message to every corner of America to build a long-term Republican Majority in Congress.”
Earlier Wednesday, Sen. Patty Murray was re-elected to another term as Senate Democratic Conference Secretary, which is that chamber’s fourth-ranking leadership post. The top three Democrats, led by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, also won re-election.