California Republicans could get some very good news and some very bad news on the same day

The next few days could bring rare good news for California Republicans… and some really bad news.

The good news will be that one of them — Bakersfield’s Kevin McCarthy, the top House Republican — is likely to win an internal leadership vote on Tuesday that could put him on the path to Speaker of the House.

If McCarthy becomes speaker, he would be the most powerful California Republican on the national stage since Ronald Reagan – and could help revitalize the California Republican Party at death’s door.

He could harness the tremendous fundraising power that comes with speaking to California and helping recruit top candidates to run for office here. McCarthy is good with donors, and we know what a California speaker can bring home: Nancy Pelosi has raised over $1.2 billion for the Democrats during her tenure.

“Retiring Nancy Pelosi and replacing her with a California Republican in Leader McCarthy is exciting for both us as California Republicans and for the nation,” said California GOP Chair Jessica Patterson, who looks to McCarthy as a mentor .

But McCarthy has a potentially fatal problem — and it has to do with the heavy dose of bad news also coming for California Republicans on Tuesday, when Donald Trump is expected to announce his 2024 presidential candidacy.

You are tied forever. The former president and one-time moderate, whom Trump referred to as “my Kevin,” are tied to a balloon like an anvil. If Trump falls – and a growing number of conservatives have fallen from the faith by publicly shooting at him this week – then Trump will take McCarthy with him.

On Friday, Trump adviser Jason Miller said McCarthy “needs to be much clearer about his support for President Trump in 2024.”

With Republicans expected to control the House with few votes at best, McCarthy cannot afford to alienate Trump and House representatives who swear by him, said Mike Madrid, a former political director the California GOP, who has known McCarthy for more than 25 years.

“Kevin has no choice but to do whatever Trump says,” said Madrid, who is a co-founder of the anti-Trump Lincoln Project. “And with Trump’s fortune, so does Kevin’s weak influence, to a very, very thin majority.”

Trump’s resurgence isn’t just a dilemma for McCarthy, it’s bad news for most Republicans running in blue California and looking to attract independent voters.

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