The ongoing struggle to find a Speaker of the House has been fraught with disagreement on the Republican side of the aisle and for good reason.
After the red wave that never was and the passage of the omnibus bill, Republican lawmakers and voters alike are sick and tired of the GOP establishment being the Igor to the Democrat Party’s Dr. Frankenstein.
A number of Republican officials are absolutely refusing to vote for Kevin McCarthy, a politician who exemplifies the GOP’s penchant for being Democrat Lite and one of the men who sat back and watched the Republican Party flounder during the midterms. After the passage of the omnibus, the House Minority Leader is looking less like a leader and more like a liability.
Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz is one such man looking to stop McCarthy from obtaining the gavel. Earlier Tuesday, he gave a short speech to reporters about why he’s resisting the GOP’s main pick, and embedded in his words was something that might have defined the Republican Party in its current state better than any other.
Gaetz began by revealing that he and others were threatened to be taken off committee spots if they didn’t vote for McCarthy, but Gaetz said his position was that if someone like McCarthy were in charge then there wouldn’t be any teeth to bite. If all Republicans have is the ability to bark then the committee assignments mean nothing anyway.
He then said something very poignant.
“I don’t want to relive the Benghazi experience where it’s just theatre pretending to be oversight,” said Gaetz.
BREAKING: @MattGaetz says members were threatened with removal from committees if they don’t vote for Kevin McCarthy for Speaker.
“I’m not here to participate in some puppet show.. I don’t want to relive the Benghazi experience where it’s just theatre pretending to be oversight” pic.twitter.com/arK1HSJMsi
— ALX 🇺🇸 (@alx) January 3, 2023
And herein we see the Republican Party defined.
Right now, the Republican Party is about as dangerous as a revolver without any bullets in it. It just looks threatening. The GOP is all flash and noise, but it doesn’t have the willingness to fight meaningfully against a Democrat Party that has become unquestioningly radicalized. McCarthy is, for all intents and purposes, a perfect reflection of the Republican Party as Gaetz described.
“Theater pretending to be oversight.”
No one should be surprised that McCarthy is failing to get the votes because Republican politicians are only doing what their voters told them to do. They’re there to drain the swamp and restore order to a political body that is clearly out of control. If the GOP is so upset about this, then perhaps they need to stop asking why politicians like Gaetz are so unwilling to fall in line and begin asking why the GOP establishment is inspiring this kind of rebellion within its own ranks.
Of course, we’d all rather see a Republican in the speakership position, but if that speaker is just going to ask “how high” when Democrats say “jump” then what’s the point? Minor victories mean nothing in the face of massive losses, and with McCarthy, many voters see exactly that.
There’s no point in a Republican Party if the Republican Party won’t be a Republican Party.
Love him or hate him, Gaetz has a point and it’s one that the Republican Party should seriously consider.