WASHINGTON -- Minnesota's Republicans said they were disheartened at the reigning chaos at the top of their caucus in the massive leadership shake up Thursday, but that they were optimistic the right leader would emerge within a few weeks.
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy abruptly dropped out of the race to replace outgoing House Speaker John Boehner on Thursday.
Rep. Tom Emmer, a freshman Republican representing the Sixth Congressional District, compared voters' uncertainty about GOP leadership to stockholders nervous about changes at the top of a company.
"You have your voters, your consitutents, people looking for leadership. The more they see this lack of a focus and a direction, it's just like a business, shareholders and investers, get very nervous when business is like that," he said "They want strong leadership. They want a plan. I think that's what everyone's demanding on the outside and right now this type of thing doesn't help that."
GOP Rep. Erik Paulsen is a close friend of McCarthy and called the shake up disappointing.
"In the grand scheme of things, it's nothing to panic about. We still have a speaker, we still have a leader and we have some big stuff to do in the next few weeks and months ahead," Paulsen said. "It will sort itself out."
Republican Rep. John Kline didn't answer requests for comments or interviews off the House floor Thursday.
But his spokesman Troy Young said in an e-mailed statement, "Congressman Kline is confident House Republicans will select someone who can do what's best for our country and this institution."
Emmer declined to say whether he supported the House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy for speaker and went into the vote undecided on Thursday. He said he was shocked when McCarthy announced he wasn't running.
"I think it would be easy to slide, to say, this is terrible this is awful, the sky is falling, but that doesn't solve anything," Emmer said.
Emmer joked that a constituent asked him why he doesn't run for speaker -- even though he's only been on Capitol Hill for ten months.
"Clearly this is someone who must not like me very much," he said, laughing..