Kevin McCarthy predicts Matt Gaetz will soon face same troubles as George Santos

Matt-Gaetz Kevin McCarthy
'Once that Ethics complaint comes forward, he could have the same problem.'

Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy said a House investigation could leave U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz without his current relevancy.

During an interview with Fox Business’ Maria Bartiromo, the California Republican unprompted added further fuel to his ongoing feud with Gaetz.

McCarthy became the first lawmaker ousted as U.S. Speaker of the House after Gaetz in October made a motion to vacate the leadership post. That set off a 22-day leadership fight in Congress, ultimately resulting in U.S. Rep. Mike Johnson, a Louisiana Republican, becoming Speaker.

Bartiromo asked McCarthy about progress in the House since the transition, and the former Speaker suggested dissent within the GOP caucus continued to stall action.

“Unfortunately, we have a number of members doing the exact same thing they did before, stopping bills from moving forward,” McCarthy said. “We’re going to have to come together.”

Then he made clear he believes Gaetz continues to stall policy advancement. And he repeated an assertion that’s mostly to scuttle a House Ethics investigation into Gaetz’s personal sex scandal.

Gaetz, for his part, repeatedly said his motivation for ousting McCarthy stemmed from a refusal to advance individual appropriations bills and stand up to President Joe Biden and Senate Democrats on budget talks. He criticized McCarthy as beholden to special interests in Washington.

“Did people actually believe we were going to take power away from a corrupted person like Kevin McCarthy and the swamp creatures?” Gaetz said at the Florida Freedom Summit earlier this month to cheers.

While McCarthy has suggested as much before, he now has compared Gaetz’s ethical quandaries to those of U.S. Rep. George Santos, a New York Republican on the verge of expulsion from Congress.

“We do know this is really driven, as you know and you’ve had on your show, (by) Matt Gaetz’s ethics complaint,” McCarthy said. “I think once that Ethics complaint comes forward, he could have the same problem as Santos has.”

House Ethics Committee Chair Michael Guest, a Mississippi Republican, on Friday introduced a resolution to expel Santos. The move came after the Ethics Committee released a detailed report outlining campaign fundraising allegations and willful lying on financial disclosures. Under McCarthy, Santos in January voluntarily stepped away from any committee assignments amid scrutiny of numerous elements of apparent fabrication about his personal background.

Gaetz’s office responded on Sunday, and referenced a complaint Gaetz filed against Gaetz for reportedly shoving U.S. Rep. Tim Burchett.

“The ethics complaint against Congressman Matt Gaetz emerged from a years old, anonymous, debunked New York Times story. Since then, Rep. Gaetz has been exonerated by the DOJ, the FEC and through the criminal convictions of those spreading lies about him,” the statement reads.

“By contrast, the ethics complaint against the former Speaker emerges from an assault, two eyewitnesses, an audio recording, and a pattern of allegations regarding the same conduct, reduced to writing and published. Yet, the dispositive difference is that McCarthy personally appointed every Republican on the Ethics Committee, some of whom have expressed explicit desire to retaliate against Rep. Gaetz.”

He specifically noted U.S. Rep. John Rutherford, a Jacksonville Republican, who heavily criticized Gaetz for spearheading McCarthy’s removal as Speaker.

“Notably, Rep. Rutherford explicitly referenced retaliation against Rep. Gaetz as his driving motivation in opposing Rep. Jim Jordan to become Speaker,” the statement from Gaetz’s office reads. “‘I’m a no on allowing Matt Gaetz…to win,’ Rep. Rutherford said. He went on to release an even stronger retaliatory statement about Rep. Gaetz, concluding: ‘[Gaetz’s] disrespect for his colleagues, this institution, and the people we serve is a clear reflection of his lacking fitness to serve in Congress…’ All this over removing McCarthy. Sad!”

McCarthy asserted House Republicans would be healthier once Santos and Gaetz were isolated or removed.

“I think the conference would be probably better united to be able to move forward and get this all done,” he said.

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


  • JD

    November 19, 2023 at 11:55 am

    It’s about f*cking time the Republicans ejected some of the clowns out of the car and the freaks from the big tent.

    It’s a shame it had to come to the ABSOLUTE BOTTOM OF THE BARREL before doing so, but here we all are.


    • Impeach Biden

      November 19, 2023 at 12:14 pm

      That’s the difference between Repubs and Demo’s. Look at the nuts in your party starting with the Squad. You embrace those idiots.


      • JD

        November 19, 2023 at 12:55 pm

        You make th assumption I’m a Democrat, but OK, you picked it, I’ll play.

        What’s wrong with AOC? From everything I gather, she’s from a legal immigrant family and working blue collar when elected to congress. Definately not and “Elite”. What’s wrong with her?

        As far as I know “The Squad” refers to a group of progressive Democratic members of the United States Congress. First formed after the 2018 midterm elections, the original members of “The Squad” include Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (New York), Ilhan Omar (Minnesota), Ayanna Pressley (Massachusetts), and Rashida Tlaib (Michigan). Since then, other members have sometimes been associated with the group based on their political views and initiatives.

        The reasons for the controversy surrounding “The Squad” are multi-faceted:

        Progressive Policies: They advocate for progressive policies such as the Green New Deal, Medicare for All, and defunding the police. These policies are significantly to the left of the mainstream Democratic platform, attracting criticism from both Republicans and more moderate Democrats. While I think health care and education should be available at a REASONABLE COST (not free) to all, most of the things I have griped about the FLGOP have been about lack of common sense or pandering.

        Public Persona and Media Attention: Members of “The Squad” are very active on social media and often receive significant media attention. Their outspoken nature and willingness to challenge established political norms sometimes lead to clashes within their own party and with the media. Posting on a blog forum and griping about this is calling it kettle black, so I am not doing it.

        Cultural and Political Polarization: The United States is currently experiencing high levels of political and cultural polarization. As prominent figures in progressive politics, members of “The Squad” are often targeted by conservative media and politicians, contributing to their divisive reputation among conservative audiences.

        Criticism and Controversy: Certain statements and positions taken by members of “The Squad” have drawn criticism and controversy. For example, Ilhan Omar has been accused of making anti-Semitic remarks, which she has apologized for. These incidents have contributed to a negative perception among some segments of the population. Look elsewhere on this site, I don’t condone this and have been calling out the Nazi marches.

        Identity and Representation: The members of “The Squad” represent a diverse range of backgrounds, including race, religion, and socioeconomic status. This diversity, while celebrated by many, has also been a point of contention in a politically and culturally divided country. I don’t need to say more, look at census data.

        If you follow any of my posts, I haven’t been aligned with left practices. I just don’t like the current right choke hold in Florida, because they are not Republicans, but real RINO’s. They are not conservative except when it serves their purpose and the pandering should stop. And Matt Gaetz will get his comeuppance.

        But whatever.


    • Michael K

      November 19, 2023 at 12:15 pm

      There is no bottom of the barrel with these clowns. They will plumb new depths of depravity and disgrace because this is all they do and all they know – they cannot and will not govern. I have no doubt that McCarthy will extract his vengeance from Gaetz, who – along with MTG – is one of the most despicable members of the House.


      • Impeach Biden

        November 19, 2023 at 12:27 pm

        Jerry Nadler, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, The Squad, Maxine Waters, Hank Johnson, and many others say hi.


        • JD

          November 19, 2023 at 1:08 pm

          Sure, let’s talk about them:

          Jerry Nadler: He has been involved in high-profile political actions like the impeachment of President Trump. Nadler has faced criticism from opponents, but there are no confirmed ethical violations.

          Debbie Wasserman Schultz: As Chair of the DNC, she was accused of favoring Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders in the 2016 primaries, leading to her resignation. This raised ethical questions but didn’t result in legal charges.

          The Squad:

          Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Faced scrutiny over campaign finance practices, but no formal ethical violations were confirmed.
          Ilhan Omar: She was found to have violated state campaign finance rules by using campaign funds for personal expenses and repaid the funds.
          Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib: No significant ethical or legal violations reported.
          Maxine Waters: Investigated for possibly assisting a bank in which her husband had stock during the 2008 crisis. She was cleared of all charges in 2012.

          Hank Johnson: Known for some controversial statements, but no significant ethical violations or legal issues reported


        • TJC

          November 19, 2023 at 2:58 pm

          Good to know you are in touch with them! Give them a happy hello for me, too.


    • Earl Pitts "The Big Voice On The Right" American

      November 19, 2023 at 3:51 pm

      Y’all Lefty’s in Florida need to start getting your pea Brains around the fact that soon after DeSantis takes The White House, Goetz takes The Govornor’s Mansion in Florida.
      If y’all will just practice visualizing that fact in your minds for 6 -8 hours a day it really will be a lot less stressful when it comes to fruition.
      Thank you America,
      Earl Pitts “EARL CARES ABOUT YOUR FEELINGS” American


      • Earl Pitts "The Big Voice On The Right" American

        November 19, 2023 at 3:54 pm

        Yep mis-spelled Gaetz, get over it, Miss Grundy, my 10th grade English Teacher.


  • Impeach Biden

    November 19, 2023 at 11:57 am

    At some point I thought Gaetz was a rising star in the Republican Party. After what he pulled a few weeks ago I have changed my opinion of him. He’s just another loud mouth punk.


    • TJC

      November 19, 2023 at 2:56 pm

      Well said.


  • My Take

    November 19, 2023 at 3:44 pm

    LOCK HIM UP !!

    Or is it a bit too early for that ?


  • My Take

    November 19, 2023 at 3:59 pm

    A little shove, what wimps.
    Before the Civil War a senator I believe took a cane to another, in session, in the chamber!


  • Sonja Fitch

    November 20, 2023 at 4:56 am

    Lol. Gaetz ain’t notin but a spoiled perverted brat! West Florida VOTE
    Gaetz OUT or demand Gaetz resign. Gaetz is such an embarrassment! Ok tell all about Gaetz! Lol


  • My Take

    November 30, 2023 at 2:54 am

    I think of Gaetz as pretty much the new model of Republican. Triumph of the Will.
    The GOP deserves him.
    Though we don’t.


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