A bit of late intrigue in the race for House Republican conference chairman today -- as The Hill's Russell Berman notes, Paul Ryan has thrown his support behind Rep. Tom Price (R-GA), who's going up against rising star, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers.
Price is the underdog, and The Weekly Standard's Michael Warren points out what Rodgers' potentially brings to the table.
McMorris Rodgers has been serving as vice conference chair, and she’s well liked among the leadership. She was the Romney campaign’s official House liaison during the campaign, and she raised over $1 million for the National Republican Congressional Committee.
Fundraising prowess is valuable among the establishment. It doesn’t hurt, either, that McMorris Rodgers is a woman—Republicans on the Hill are grappling with the party’s struggles with female voters. A competent congresswoman standing prominently alongside John Boehner and Eric Cantor, delivering the Republican message, is a step in the right direction, GOP sources say.
Look for McMorris Rodgers to play an even bigger, more visible role in party politics in the future.
During the 2012 Veepstakes, her name was tossed around as a darkhorse, and she's primed for breakout status over the next four years -- to such degree that it's possible to see her at the fore of any future Veep discussions (a 2016 presidential bid is highly unlikely, though). Meanwhile, Rebecca Berg notes today that she seems to be smartly playing up the female angle in her bid for leadership.