On Monday, Rep. Matt Gaetz announced plans to give a fiery speech on the House floor Tuesday to denounce the lack of political will to impeach President Joe Biden on zero evidence. The Florida man’s promised speech came after a week of public attacks on Republican Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy. But just hours before Gaetz’s speech, McCarthy announced that he was calling for an impeachment inquiry into the president.
Some might assume Gaetz was sufficiently undercut by McCarthy’s brief press conference. Some might be wrong. The political theater-loving looney toon took to the floor of the House and began by chastising the speaker for being “out of compliance with the agreement that allowed you to assume this role,” and threatening his party leader with expulsion from his leadership position.
I’m no Sherlock Holmes or anything, but it sounds a lot like the rumored “three-page deal”—the one between McCarthy and wackadoos like Gaetz in the Freedom Caucus that the Republican Party denied existed—might actually exist? But that was all preamble, as Gaetz proceeded to give a speech about the terrible job McCarthy is doing. It included him calling McCarthy’s press conference announcing the impeachment inquiry a “rushed” and “somewhat rattled performance.” Grab some popcorn!
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A couple of quick notes on Gaetz’s speech:
He said that his agenda is “the last, best hope for tens of millions of Republicans.” There were more than 158 million votes cast in the 2022 election. Just sayin’
Gaetz also said, “Mr. Speaker, dust off our written January agreement. You have a copy.” Paging Sherlock Holmes!
He accused the speaker of trying to build a “Biden/McCarthy/Jeffries” government. Teehee!
When Gaetz was done filling the House chamber with hot air, the chair made an announcement reminding representatives to “direct your remarks to the chair and not to a perceived viewing audience.”
Transcript has been lightly edited for clarity:
REP. MATT GAETZ: On this very floor in January, the whole world witnessed a historic contest for House Speaker. I rise today to serve notice, Mr. Speaker, you are out of compliance with the agreement that allowed you to assume this role. The path forward for the House of Representatives is to either bring you into immediate, total compliance or remove you pursuant to a motion to vacate the chair.
We have had no vote on term limits or on balanced budgets as the agreement demanded and required. There has been no full release of the January 6 tapes, as you promised. There has been insufficient accountability for the Biden crime family, and instead of cutting spending to raise the debt limit, you relied on budgetary gimmicks and rescissions, so that you ultimately ended up serving as the valet to underwrite Biden's debt and advance his spending agenda.
Mr. Speaker, you boasted in January that we would use “the power of the subpoena and the power of the purse,” but here we are eight months later, and we haven't even sent the first subpoena to Hunter Biden. That's how you know that the rushed and, you know, somewhat rattled performance you just saw from the speaker isn't real at this point.
During Democratic control over the House of Representatives, they had already brought in Don Junior three times, and we haven't even sent the first subpoena to Hunter Biden. Power of the subpoena and power of the purse. Only thing the 118th Congress is known for at this point is electing Kevin McCarthy speaker and underwriting Biden's debt, and unfortunately there's only one of those things we can remediate at this time.
Power of the purse. Our leadership right now is asking us to vote for a continuing resolution. A vote for a continuing resolution is a vote to continue the Green New Deal. A vote to continue inflationary spending. And in the most troubling of fashions, a vote for a continuing resolution is a vote to continue the election interference of Jack Smith.
Mr. Speaker, we told you how to use the power of the purse. Individual single-subject spending bills that would allow us to have specific review, programmatic analysis, and it would allow us to zero out the salaries of the bureaucrats who have broken bad, targeted President Trump, or cut sweetheart deals for Hunter Biden. September 30th is rapidly approaching, and you have not put us in a position to succeed.
There is no way to pass all the individual appropriations bills now. And it's not like we didn't know when September 30th was going to show up on the calendar. I must be better. You must be better and this House must be better, for it is the last, best hope for tens of millions of Republicans. We demand real oversight against this weaponized government.
Just look at the bribery. If tens of millions of dollars flowing from foreign corrupt people into the bank accounts of the Biden family wasn't enough for actual impeachment, why were we even looking? Joe Biden deserves impeachment for converting the vice presidency into an ATM machine for virtually his entire family. We all see it. We all know it. Now, moments ago, Speaker McCarthy endorsed an impeachment inquiry.
This is a baby step following weeks of pressure from House conservatives to do more. We must move faster. Now, I will concede that the votes I have called for will likely fail. Term limits, balanced budgets, maybe even impeachment. I am prepared for that eventuality because at least if we take votes, the American people get to see who's fighting for them and who's willing to tolerate more corruption and business as usual.
Mr. Speaker, dust off our written January agreement. You have a copy. Reflect on the spirit of that agreement and build on the start that we had moments ago began to comply. No continuing resolutions, individual spending bills or bust, votes on balanced budgets and term limits. Subpoenas for Hunter Biden and the members of the Biden family who've been grifting off of this country, and the impeachment for Joe Biden that he so richly deserves.
Do these things or face a motion to vacate the chair. And let me alert the country: A motion to vacate might not pass at first, but it might before the 15th vote. And if Democrats bail out McCarthy, as they may do, then I will lead the resistance to this uni-party and the Biden/McCarthy/Jeffries government that they are attempting to build.
I know that Washington isn't a town where people are known for keeping their word. Well, Speaker McCarthy, I'm here to hold you to yours. I yield back.
Those on the other side of the aisle are understandably baffled.
Why does it seem like Republicans have such a hard time recruiting Senate candidates who actually live in the states they want to run in? We're discussing this strange but persistent phenomenon on this week's edition of "The Downballot." The latest example is former Michigan Rep. Mike Rogers, who's been spending his time in Florida since leaving the House in 2015, but he's not the only one. Republican Senate hopefuls in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Montana, and Wisconsin all have questionable ties to their home states—a problem that Democrats have gleefully exploited in recent years. (Remember Dr. Oz? Of course you do.)