Sam Hall: Speaker’s departure could boost Harper profile
The aftermath of U.S. House Speaker John Boehner’s retirement could prove to be more influence for Mississippi — even if only slightly so.
The heir-apparent to the speakership is Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, with whom Mississippi’s 4th District Rep. Gregg Harper has developed a strong relationship. McCarthy visited Mississippi last year as Harper’s guest to tour telemedicine facilities. It was part of Harper’s push for a telemedicine bill that McCarthy has championed.
Over the past few years, Harper has quietly developed strong relationships within Boehner’s leadership structure. A couple of times he was near to being tapped for lower leadership offices, but politics being politics has kept him from a leadership position.