While House Minority Whip Newt Gingrich (Ga.) plots a campaign for the job being vacated by retiring Minority Leader Robert H. Michel (Ill.), a scramble for Gingrich's post is under way. The early front-runners are two very conservative and very partisan representatives: Robert S. Walker of Pennsylvania, Gingrich's sidekick and an ace vote-counter, and Tom DeLay of Texas, a skilled legislative strategist. The GOP's moderate wing is likely to come up with a contender of its own. Possible candidates include Jerry Lewis of California, who lost the No.3 leadership job in a right-wing coup last year, and J. Dennis Hastert of Illinois. Regardless of the outcome, the already ultraconservative House Republican leadership seems certain to move further to the right.
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