Florida GOP Congressman Matt Gaetz has made waves in the political arena, using his influence to shake up the power dynamics on Capitol Hill.
Gaetz’s bold actions have garnered both praise and criticism, with some hailing him as a champion for conservative values, while others accuse him of creating chaos.
Speaking at the Republican Party’s Florida Freedom Summit Saturday in Kissimmee, Gaetz proudly boasted about his role in securing a more conservative leader.
“Some people call me vile, crazy, and an agent of chaos. And that was just the congressional Republicans. They said far worse about me than they ever did Jack Smith, Mayorkas or, Merrick Garland, Christopher Wray, or even Joe Biden. And by the way, Joe Biden deserves impeachment, and Hunter Biden deserves a damn subpoena,” said Gaetz.
Gaetz highlighted how his determination to fight against the entrenched powers in Washington had led to this significant victory for the conservative movement.
“Fighting Washington has won us a new conservative speaker. Fighting Washington has shown the swamp creatures that they don’t win every time. Fighting Washington has restored some modicum of power back to ‘We the People.’ And I’m just getting started,” said Gaetz Saturday.
The recent redistricting in Florida resulted in four more Republicans being elected to the U.S. House, effectively shifting the balance of power in the GOP chamber in Washington.
As a result, California Democrat Nancy Pelosi lost her House speakership, and Republican McCarthy was ultimately removed from his position.
Gaetz took this opportunity Saturday to highlight Florida’s role in shaping national politics, taking a jab at McCarthy’s leadership style, which he believed was too accommodating to Democrats.
“So I guess, in a way, you could say that it was Florida that led to the firing of not one but two liberal California speakers,” said Gaetz.
Gaetz published a letter in The Wall Street Journal on Friday responding to recent hit pieces in the newspaper by its editorial team and GOP strategist Karl Rove.
The Journal editorial board criticized Gaetz for taking House GOP lawmakers to the “Gaetz of Republican Hell” after Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan’s failed bid to become speaker.
In reply, Gaetz noted in his letter on Friday, “This is the first regime change the editorial board has likely ever taken issue with. Would it have been better if I found an extremist Sunni Muslim to become speaker?”
As for Rove, he had been a frequent critic of Gaetz over the challenge to McCarthy. In the Journal opinion article cited by Gaezt, he called Gaetz a “loudmouth” who “gave America this period of instability and Republicans a PR disaster that could cost them their slim majority in 2024.”
Rove also asserted that because of Gaetz, voters would not “reward a party that displays contempt for the hard, slow work of coalition building and governing.”
In his letter, Gaetz added, “I understand why Karl Rove … and the Journal are upset. You used to be important. For many years, the Republican Party was controlled by your brand of politics—amnesty for illegal immigrants, intervention overseas, and deference to corporate America.”
“Those days are over. The Make America Great Again movement is ascendant. Donald Trump remains the leader of the party, and Mitt Romney is a pariah in the GOP.”
“Kevin McCarthy is no longer speaker,” Gaetz continued. “Instead, Mike Johnson—a committed conservative who will stick to his word—will lead the House. This might upset fans of the status quo, but the stability favored by the establishment resulted in runaway debt and an open border.”
“I will continue disrupting the system to better the lives of my constituents,” he concluded.
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