Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, who launched the chain of events that left the House without a speaker for more than a week, on Thursday posted comments from former President Donald Trump that criticized former Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
During the clip, the former president offered his thoughts on Gaetz’s decision to oppose McCarthy.
“Well, he was upset that Kevin was doing a lot of the Obama work. He was working on the budget and getting something approved that, you know, we could have gotten a lot for. And the debt ceiling, everybody was hurt with that,” Trump said.
“At the same time, Kevin’s a great guy. He’s a wonderful guy. But people were hurt by that,” Trump said.
— Rep. Matt Gaetz (@RepMattGaetz) October 12, 2023
“It depends. I mean, it depends on how good the new speaker, whoever that may be, how good it does,” he said later in the radio interview.
“Maybe we’ll end up with one of the great speakers of all time, in which case Matt Gaetz did us a tremendous favor,” Trump said. “But certainly, some people aren’t so happy with him, and other people, I guess, are with him 100 percent.
“Matt’s a good guy. He means well with this. And let’s see how — you can’t really say what’s going to happen until you find out who’s picked and how good a job that person does.”
The discussion begins at 17:33 below:
That point was made clear in the case of McCarthy, whom Trump pushed GOP lawmakers to choose as speaker in January.
“Kevin McCarthy will do a good job, and maybe even a GREAT JOB – JUST WATCH!” he said in a Truth Social post.
This time around, the former president has backed House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan of Ohio for the post.
On Thursday night, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, who a day earlier had received a majority of votes in the House Republican Conference to succeed McCarthy, announced he would drop his efforts to become speaker, according to The Washington Post.
“This country is counting on us to come back together,” Scalise said.
“This House of Representatives needs a speaker, and we need to open up the House again. But clearly, not everybody is there and there’s still schisms that have to get resolved,” he said.
A speaker nominee needs 217 votes on the House floor to be elected. On Tuesday, Scalise won a secret ballot vote of House Republicans over Jordan 113-99. However, after the vote, multiple Jordan supporters said they would not get behind Scalise, making it likely that Scalise would fail if a floor vote was to be held.
Scalise did not say whom he will support for the post.
“I am sure there will be a lot of people that look at [running], but it’s got to be people that aren’t doing it for themselves and their own personal interests,” he said.
“If you look at where our conference is, there’s still work to be done. Our conference still has to come together, and it’s not there. There are still some people that have their own agendas,” he said, according to The New York Times.
The House Republican Conference was expected to meet Friday to consider its next steps.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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