A group of more than 30 Louisiana House Republicans has revived The Conservative Caucus and elected as its chairman Rep. Jack McFarland, who says the new group is needed because the GOP Caucus has become unwieldy, according to USA Today Network.
Among the members is Chalmette Rep. Ray Garofalo, whose controversial comments about slavery cost him his chairmanship on the House Education Committee and caused a rift with Republican House Speaker Clay Schexnayder of Gonzales.
McFarland, a second-term lawmaker from Winnfield, emphasizes that the invitation-only caucus remains supportive of Schexnayder and the House GOP Caucus led by Rep. Blake Miguez of Erath.
But Miguez wasn’t among the members invited to join. McFarland says a full list of members will be released at some point today.
“We’re here to support the speaker and the Republican delegation, but the delegation has grown so large it’s more difficult to manage and it has naturally broken up into different factions,” McFarland says.
Republicans have a near supermajority in the House with 68 of the 105 seats.
McFarland says the caucus will have a narrow focus with three priorities: preserving and expanding gun rights; restricting abortion rights; and advancing fiscally conservative policies. Read the full story.