Arizona Congressman Andy Biggs loses bid to become Speaker of the House

Vote was 188-31
Rep. Andy Biggs
Rep. Andy Biggs(U.S. House of Representatives)
Published: Nov. 15, 2022 at 11:47 AM MST|Updated: Nov. 15, 2022 at 12:27 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Republican Rep. Andy Biggs, who represents Arizona’s Fifth Congressional District, threw his name into the hat to challenge House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy as he reaches for the speaker’s gavel.

“Look, we were told we were going to have an incredible, incredible wave,” Biggs, who serves as a leader of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, previously said in an online streaming show. “If that would have been the case,” with a 20-, 30- or 40-seat margin, “you would say, ‘Well, OK, Kevin is the presumptive Republican nominee for speaker. But I think we need to have a serious discussion.”

A secret-ballot vote conducted Tuesday afternoon ended with a 188-31 vote with McCarthy set to continue to remain as party leader.

Biggs initially made the announcement Monday evening on NewsMax before tweeting his plans early Tuesday morning. Biggs said in part: “the American people want us to turn a page. They do not want excuses or performance art, they want action and results.”

Other top Republicans were also vying for the spot as well, according to multiple conservative blogs. Rep. Steve Scalise is also running, and Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz is backing Jim Jordan, according to The New Republic.

Biggs was first elected to the U.S. House for Arizona’s Fifth Congressional District in 2016, a district that makes up a large section of the East Valley including Gilbert and parts of Mesa and Chandler. He just won a fourth term against Democratic challenger Javier Ramos.

Biggs and McCarthy were among several GOP lawmakers subpoenaed by the Jan. 6 committee last May as part of the probe into the Capitol riots. He rejected the subpoena, calling the “illegitimate” committee’s actions “pure political theater.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.