McCarthy leaves the House Speaker race. Now what?

That already disorderly body of folks known as the Republican House members went ever farther off the tracks this morning with the announcement Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., — the front-runner for the job — would not seek the Speaker position.

McCarthy recently let the cat out of the bag that his party in Congress had purposely held hearings on the Benghazi episode to discredit the front-running Democratic candidate for the presidential race, Hillary Clinton. Oops! McCarthy told members he didn’t want to be a burden in the process of picking one of the most important seats in government. He said he didn’t want to make electing a speaker hard for members.

Two other top GOP House members had announced they too coveted the Speaker’s job: Reps. Jason Chaffetz of Utah and Daniel Webster of Florida. Chaffetz is known for his chairing the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, other than that, he bears a striking resemblance to a cartoon chipmunk. Webster is less known, despite a namesake who was a key antebellum orator and statesman who served in the Whig Party. The living Webster was a former Florida House of Representatives speaker. Whether he was elected on name recognition only is not known.

The Hill is reportedly all abuzz. That would be Capitol Hill, not the publication, flabbergasted over this sudden eruption in Republican leadership. The two announced candidates would not make me feel secure were I Republican. No one knows much about Webster other than his Florida House history which included his involvement in the Terri Schiavo case.

Obviously, Chaffetz is questionable as a House Speaker candidate due to the recent scandal over the Secret Service accessing the congressman’s personal file that noted when he applied for a job with the agency in 2003. He was turned down for that job for what was allegedly a “Better Qualified Applicant.” Some 45 Secret Service officials are known to have seen the file. So far, no information has come forward that tells the reason Chaffetz was rejected for the position he sought.

No front-runners have emerged since today’s announcement by McCarthy that he was dropping out of the Speaker’s race. Although I have not been in a position lately to speculate who might be a winning candidate, I know of a good many congressmen — about 425 or so and from all parties — I wouldn’t recommend.