Rep. Jeb Hensarling, a favorite among some conservatives in the House, will not seek the job of majority leader in the wake of Eric Cantor’s announcing he will step down from the post next month.
“Although I am humbled by the calls, emails, and conversations from my colleagues encouraging me to return to leadership for the remainder of the 113th Congress, I will not be a candidate for Majority Leader next week,” Mr. Hensarling, Texas Republican, said in a statement. “After prayerful reflection, I have come to the conclusion that this is not the right office at the right time for me and my family.”
The news removes from the election next Thursday a would-be rival of Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, California Republican, who has been moving quickly to shore up the necessary votes for the promotion. Rep. Pete Sessions, Texas Republican, is also vying for the position.
GOP Reps. Steve Scalise of Indiana and Peter Roskam of Illinois are seen as the leading contenders to replace Mr. McCarthy as whip, but GOP Rep. Marlin Stutzman told Howey Politics he is jumping into the whip race as well and backing Mr. McCarthy for majority leader.