Washington (CNN)As Republicans absorb losing the House of Representatives, the GOP leadership race in the chamber is ramping up to determine who will take over the position of No. 1 House Republican after outgoing House Speaker Paul Ryan leaves.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the current No. 2 Republican and House majority leader, and Rep. Jim Jordan, the co-founder of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, both announced bids on Wednesday to become minority leader in the next Congress after outgoing House Speaker Paul Ryan leaves.
McCarthy is viewed as the favorite to succeed Ryan, while Jordan is considered to be a longshot contender for a GOP leadership role.
House Republicans are set to hold their leadership elections on Wednesday of next week, a day after they return to Washington.
McCarthy formally announced his bid in a letter, saying that House Republicans must not let their defeat in the 2018 midterms "diminish the great gains President Trump and our majority have delivered."
McCarthy wrote, "we need to lay the groundwork to regain the majority so that we can continue working alongside President Trump to fulfill our promise to fundamentally change Washington. I helped build a majority from a deeper hole than this and I have what it takes to do it again. That is why I have decided to run for Republican Leader and humbly ask for your support."
Asked by CNN about his challenge to McCarthy on Wednesday, Jordan said, "I think we have to match the President's intensity on changing this town as we move forward."