Rep. Kevin Kiley (R-CA) was declared the winner on Tuesday in his reelection bid to represent California’s 3rd Congressional District, providing the GOP with the 218th seat it needed to secure a majority in the House being sworn in on January 3, 2023. Kiley, 37, was a first-time congressional candidate this year and was heartily endorsed by President Donald Trump.
The call was made by Decision Desk HQ after Republicans were declared winners in five pivotal House races in California and Arizona late Monday.
The race has just been called in our favor. This secures a Republican Majority in the House of Representatives.
— Kevin Kiley (@KevinKileyCA) November 15, 2022
Kiley campaigned on a strong America First platform and proposes a return for the GOP to the policies forwarded by President Trump.
As President Trump announced his 2024 candidacy on Tuesday evening at Mar-a-Lago, he praised Kiley again as a “fantastic person.” When noting that the GOP had clinched the majority earlier in the day, he singled out Kiley for special recognition as a fighter who put the party over the finish line. “I was very happy it was his vote that did it,” Trump added.
Earlier this year, Kiley told reporters that if Republicans can retake a majority in Congress, they will “need to actually put forward legislation that would return us to those policies of the Trump era, that were moving our country in the right direction to try to actually get our economy going again, to try to return security to our border, to lower taxes.”
The midterms did not produce the “red wave” that Republicans had hoped for but needing a net gain of just five House seats, the party pulled off what was needed to oust Nancy Pelosi as speaker and retake control of key committees.
There are still three races in which Republicans are leading but have not been called. If incumbent Reps. Mike Garcia (R-CA), David Valadao (R-CA), and Lauren Boebert (R-CO) end up winning as expected, the GOP majority will grow to 221 when the next House membership is seated.
Even though several races were still undecided a full week after Election Day, Republicans moved forward on Tuesday with nominations for House leadership positions. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) was nominated for Speaker of the House with 188 votes against 31 for rival Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ). McCarthy will now campaign among incoming members to attempt to secure the 218 votes he will need to be elected as speaker.
McCarthy will likely have to negotiate with members of the House Freedom Caucus to secure his place at the top of the House. He has reportedly already talked with other GOP leaders about coordinating committee investigations into a number of issues, including the probe of Hunter Biden and the presidential family’s foreign business dealings.
It is unclear at this time what position McCarthy proposes regarding Nancy Pelosi’s hand-picked and highly politicized January 6 Committee.