Matt Gaetz Lights up McCarthy on Floor About the Deal Negotiations

Matt Gaetz lights up Kevin McCarthy on House Floor (Credit: Matt Gaetz/C-SPAN)

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) laid into Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) during the vote for Speaker of the House on Friday.

He referred to his colleague saying McCarthy had “earned” the right to be Speaker. But Gaetz noted that you don’t “earn” the vote until you get the votes. It isn’t a royal gift you get by fiat and being around long enough. That’s a Hillary Clinton way of looking at things. Whether you like McCarthy or not, he has to get the votes to “earn” the position.

The critical part where he talks about why they are objecting to McCarthy starts around 3:00.

“The principal goal of the people who are objecting to Mr. McCarthy on the Republican side is that we don’t believe the rules of this place unlock the potential of all of the members, to be able to cast votes on individual bills, and to offer amendments on appropriations acts,” Gaetz said. This was a major point that Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-MT) brought up previously. That it isn’t just about McCarthy, but about improving the institution for the benefit of the people. Gaetz went on to say that they were also concerned about ballooning spending.

But Gaetz said the issue was how the negotiations went down — that they were then encouraged by McCarthy to put their names up for committees if they wanted things like rule changes. Gaetz said that they did that in good faith then he says McCarthy went out and told the media “See, they just want jobs for themselves.” “That is not pure,” Gaetz declared. Gaetz said that was what was paralyzing the House now. It looked like some of the McCarthy people were walking out on him when he was speaking at that point. Gaetz then went on to nominate Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH).

The negotiations did appear to break away people on the 12th ballot from the holdouts, though, including people like Rep. Scott Perry (PA) and Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX).

But it wasn’t enough on the 12th vote for McCarthy to prevail. We’ll have to see if there will be any more flipping but it sounds like some think they have a deal, but others don’t or are not going along with it.


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