GOP Representative Garret Graves explained that McCarthy is set to occupy the office McHenry has instructed Pelosi to vacate. He clarified, “The office Pelosi is currently in is traditionally reserved for the previous speaker. Since Speaker Pelosi and other Democrats elected Kevin McCarthy as the new Speaker, he’s getting that office.”
Sources close to Pelosi and Hoyer believe this move was retaliatory, following Democrats voting against McCarthy during the speaker’s chair vacancy vote on Tuesday. These unofficial offices are situated near the House floor.
Both McCarthy and McHenry did not respond to requests for comments.
Graves, however, blamed Democrats for McCarthy’s removal from office, stating, “I don’t know what they’re complaining about. They created this situation.”
On Tuesday, Pelosi revealed that McHenry had instructed her to vacate her office in the Capitol building, although she retains her regular office in the Longworth House office building. An email sent from McHenry’s office to Pelosi’s office on Tuesday evening, viewed by CNN, read, “Going to reassign h-132 for speaker office use. Please vacate the space tomorrow.”
Pelosi clarified that she was unable to immediately move her belongings since she was in California to mourn the passing of her dear friend Dianne Feinstein, who had served as the longest-serving female US senator in history before her recent death at age 90.
Pelosi also noted that this eviction marked a significant departure from tradition. She explained, “As Speaker, I gave former Speaker Hastert a significantly larger suite of offices for as long as he wished.”
“Office space doesn’t matter to me, but it seems to be important to them,” she added. “Now that the new Republican Leadership has settled this important matter, let’s hope they get to work on what’s truly important for the American people.”
Additionally, the House Republican leadership has removed Steny Hoyer from his Capitol hideaway office, as confirmed by his office to CNN.
A Republican aide for the House Administration Committee, which oversees office spaces, clarified that this move was not a committee request.
In his role as speaker pro tempore, McHenry will preside over the vote and selection of the House’s next speaker, with the authority to recess the chamber, adjourn it, and recognize speaker nominations.
House rules mandated that McCarthy, as speaker, submit a confidential list to the clerk, specifying the order in which individuals would act as Speaker pro tempore in the event of a vacancy. McHenry, a staunch ally of McCarthy, was placed at the top of that list.”