Topics: National News

Quick rise for McCarthy, new House majority leader

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Photo - House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy of Calif is pursued by reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, June 19, 2014, after being elected the new House majority leader by the Republican Conference, replacing Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., who was defeated in his primary earlier this month.  Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., is taking McCarthy's place as GOP whip. (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)
House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy of Calif is pursued by reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, June 19, 2014, after being elected the new House majority leader by the Republican Conference, replacing Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., who was defeated in his primary earlier this month. Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., is taking McCarthy's place as GOP whip. (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)
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WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Kevin McCarthy is a new face of the GOP, selected by House Republicans as their majority leader after a whirlwind round of politicking prompted by last week's primary election defeat of Rep. Eric Cantor.

McCarthy's lightning-fast ascent to the No. 2 House job in just his fourth term is a testament to the Californian's political skills and talent for forming relationships. Now he has the daunting challenge of working to unite a fractious House Republican caucus that's still in upheaval after Cantor's upset loss, with the most conservative lawmakers smarting over McCarthy's quick rise.

After his victory Thursday in secret balloting, he promised to work to listen to the conference and lead with courage and wisdom.

McCarthy is being replaced in the whip's job by Steve Scalise of Louisiana.

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