After a wild week in Congress, it looks like the drama is not going to end anytime soon, especially when it comes to infighting within the Republican Party. Congressman Matt Gaetz of Florida, known for his outspoken nature, went on CNN’s “State of the Union” and dropped a bombshell: he’s pushing to remove Speaker Kevin McCarthy from his leadership role. Gaetz had previously stated that he would file a motion to vacate if McCarthy worked with Democrats to pass a clean continuing resolution, which is exactly what happened. Gaetz confirmed his intention to follow through on the motion when the House reconvenes on Monday.
Gaetz didn’t hold back in his criticisms of McCarthy, accusing him of lying to both Democrats and Republicans. He argued that McCarthy had broken trust with his colleagues and that it was time for new leadership. However, Gaetz has yet to offer a potential replacement for McCarthy, and it’s unclear if anyone else is actively seeking the job. Despite Gaetz’s determination, there seems to be little appetite among his colleagues for a fight. This is a curious turn of events considering Gaetz’s reported plans to run for Florida governor in the future.
The fate of Kevin McCarthy’s speakership now rests in House Democrats' hands.
After relying on Democrats to keep the government funded Saturday, the GOP leader is expected to need them to bail him out again, as Rep. Matt Gaetz vows to trigger an effort to oust him this week. pic.twitter.com/fRc3QtlQk4
— DarthMe (@DarthSarc) October 2, 2023
Gaetz has even approached Democrats in his quest to oust McCarthy, seeking their support. While it’s not surprising that liberals wouldn’t come to McCarthy’s rescue, Gaetz’s discussions with Democrats indicate his seriousness about his efforts. However, some Democrats have encouraged Gaetz to hold off on his bid until after the impending government shutdown. It seems that Gaetz’s maneuvering has caught the attention of both sides of the aisle.
Removing McCarthy from power is just one part of the equation. The other part is finding a suitable replacement that can gain the support of all sides. Republican lawmakers have been discussing potential candidates, but it remains to be seen who will emerge as a consensus choice. The challenge lies in finding someone who both Republicans and Democrats can agree on. As of now, no one seems eager to take on the daunting task of Speaker.
In the end, it’s possible that all this talk of fighting against McCarthy could merely be performative. Some sources suggest that this could be just another grand display from anti-McCarthy forces, lacking true substance or support. If that’s the case, it would be another example of political grandstanding overshadowing meaningful action. The result could be a continued stalemate in Congress, with no resolution in sight.