Wherever Matt Gaetz goes, bad things follow. Call it Gaetz’s Law. But based on new audio recordings that were made in the days following the Capitol Riots, and obtained by The New York Times, even Gaetz’s fellow Republicans seem to have had enough of the controversial Florida congressman’s “crazy” rhetoric, which they feared was endangering people.
In a series of phone calls to other Republican leaders, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy claimed the atmosphere in America was “too crazy” for people to have to put up with the vitriol being spewed by a handful of his fellow GOP members, including the always-zany Lauren Boebert. But McCarthy saved the bulk of his criticism for Gaetz and Alabama congressman Mo Brooks. As The New York Times wrote:
Mr. Brooks and Mr. Gaetz were the prime offenders in the eyes of G.O.P. leaders. Mr. Brooks addressed the Jan. 6 rally on the National Mall, which preceded the Capitol riot, using incendiary language. After Jan. 6, Mr. Gaetz went on television to attack multiple Republicans who had criticized Mr. Trump, including Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, a member of the leadership team.
Those comments by Mr. Gaetz alarmed Mr. McCarthy and his colleagues in leadership — particularly the reference to Ms. Cheney, who was already the target of threats and public abuse from Mr. Trump’s faction in the party because of her criticism of the defeated president.
McCarthy expressed his concerns that Gaetz was “putting people in jeopardy, and he doesn’t need to be doing this. We saw what people would do in the Capitol, you know, and these people came prepared with rope, with everything else.”
In a conversation with Steve Scalise, the House Republican Whip even suggested that Gaetz’s verbal attacks in the wake of the January 6th insurrection might be “potentially illegal.”
Gaetz—never one to keep his mouth shut, even in situations where it’s probably the best thing to do—has already fired back at his fellow Republicans, stating that “Rep McCarthy and Rep. Scalise held views about President Trump and me that they shared on sniveling calls with Liz Cheney, not us. This is the behavior of weak men, not leaders.”
You can hear the full audio of their calls here.
(Via The New York Times)