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2020

Matt Gaetz embraces ‘entitled’ label as he parries attack from Democratic challenger

Gaetz touts his past electoral victories, spotlights Phil Ehr’s 2018 and chess club losses.

U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz is perpetuating a Twitter feud with his Democratic opponent, Phil Ehr, embracing the attacks against him with less than two weeks until the General Election.

The Fort Walton Beach Republican is expected to win reelection to a third term in the House of Representatives. But that hasn’t stopped his Democratic challenger, a retired Navy Commander, from taking shots at Gaetz, calling the Representative “entitled to the power” in one of his latest attacks.

“I feel entitled to the position because I got more than two-thirds of the vote the last 4X I’ve been on a ballot,” the Gaetz tweeted.

“By contrast, you lost re-election as chess club president and your only campaign for congress 2 years ago quite badly.”

The Republican’s volley was a response to a tweet Ehr sent Wednesday evening.

“Matt Gaetz feels as though he is entitled to the power he’s been hand-fed and doesn’t even try to work hard for his constituents. It’s time to send #LazyGaetz packing,” Ehr tweeted in an implied attack against his connection to father, former Senate President Don Gaetz and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Gaetz’s attack against Ehr’s electoral history and extracurriculars didn’t yet secure a checkmate victory. Within 15 minutes, Ehr struck back again.

“Admitting you are entitled is the first step @MattGaetz. It’s an honor to serve the American people, not a right,” he tweeted, adding a request to debate the incumbent.

Twelve days remain until the election.

Gaetz is known for his fiery displays and and for issuing pointed attacks on Twitter. But Ehr hasn’t shied away from elevating his own attacks on social media.

Ehr was unopposed for the Democratic nomination for Florida’s 1st Congressional District. Ehr lost the Democratic nomination by 21 points in 2018 to Jennifer Zimmerman, who went on to lose to Gaetz by a 34-point margin.

The district stretches from Pensacola to beyond Destin.

Gaetz will stump with Trump, a close ally, in Pensacola when the incumbent President makes another couple campaign stops in the Sunshine State Friday.

Written By

Renzo Downey covers state government for Florida Politics. After graduating from Northwestern University in 2019, Renzo began his reporting career in the Lone Star State, covering state government for the Austin American-Statesman. Shoot Renzo an email at renzo@floridapolitics.com and follow him on Twitter @RenzoDowney.

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