JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) — Congresswoman Diana Harshbarger (R-TN) visited Johnson City on Saturday to attend an event, and while she was in town, News Channel 11 spoke with her about the race for Speaker of the House and the ongoing conflict in Israel.
Harshbarger initially backed Jim Jordan (R-OH) for Speaker, however, the GOP dropped him as their nominee on Friday. Harshbarger said the next steps going into Monday will be hearing the new candidates‘ presentations.
“Well, we go back to conference Monday, and we’ll have candidates who will present at the candidate forum, and then Tuesday we will have a vote,” she said. “And according to conference rules, the one with the least votes will be eliminated; they’ll keep doing that until we end up with one or two men or women who will possibly reach the magic number, which is 217 votes.”
When asked about the ongoing attacks by Hamas in Israel, Harshbarger said the devastation is unbelievable and that she would support any decision from Israel to “take Hamas out”.
“When it comes to them making decisions for their own country, it is their [Israel’s] decision to go in and take Hamas out, and I support that fully,” she said.
“I mean, when you see the devastation that’s incurred in the Gaza Strip, it’s unbelievable, and they [Hamas] still have American hostages, so you can’t tolerate that kind of behavior, and we support Israel. They are a great ally, always have been, and we’ll stand firm with them.”
Regarding relief aid for refugees, Harshbarger said she’s aware of aid already overseas, but that it’s unable to make it into Israel.
“There evidently is aid, even on the side of Egypt that they can’t get in for those Palestinian refugees, so they have to continue working to get that to those people. You know, the Palestinians themselves are not bad people, it is Hamas.”
Representative Harshbarger returns to Washington D.C. on Monday to continue the Speaker election process.