Attorneys for House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., sent a cease-and-desist email to a conservative social media influencer who claimed he was paid to promote a post against Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., and a possible government shutdown, Politico reported.
McCarthy's outside counsel on Tuesday night sent the cease-and-desist email to an individual at the firm Notorious LLC, which describes itself as a "global content studio and network," Politico reported.
According to the outlet, the email demanded that the individual immediately stop claiming they are working on behalf of McCarthy.
"I understand based on multiple reporter inquiries that reference your name that you are reaching out to social media influencers about a 'Against Gaetz and government shutdown' [campaign] and claiming it is in on [sic] behalf of Speaker McCarthy and/or entities purportedly affiliated with the Speaker. That is false and in violation of the law," wrote Elliot S. Berke, a managing partner at Berke Farah LLP, Politico reported.
"This email puts you on notice that you must immediately cease and desist or we will move forward with all remedies under the law influencing the pursuit of damages where warranted."
Gaetz had shared and criticized a post on social media platform X that claimed a "McCarthy proxy" had tried to pay the influencer to promote a post against the congressman and the government shutdown.
Gaetz responded on X by calling McCarthy "pathetic."
McCarthy's office denied it had anything to do with the account, Politico reported.
A federal government shutdown looms Saturday if Congress fails to agree on funding for the 2024 fiscal year.
McCarthy has pitched a stopgap continuing resolution (CR) to provide short-term funding and buy time for lawmakers to negotiate.
Gaetz, a critic of the speaker, and other hard-line conservatives have said they will not agree to a CR. They want appropriation bills with reduced overall spending and less or no aid to Ukraine. They also want to address the migrant crisis at the southern border and woke policies at the Pentagon.
Gaetz has threatened a motion to vacate, which could result in McCarthy's removal as speaker.
Charlie McCarthy, a writer/editor at Newsmax, has nearly 40 years of experience covering news, sports, and politics.
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