Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., told Newsmax that former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., broke the promises he made with conservative members to gain their support earlier this year.
Appearing Tuesday on "Eric Bolling The Balance," Gaetz defended his successful motion to vacate the speaker of the House, resulting in McCarthy's ouster, and outlined the steps going forward.
The final vote was 216-210 to remove, with eight Republicans joining all the Democrats.
"I never thought we'd be at this moment," Gaetz admitted. "It's because, in February and March, we really saw Speaker McCarthy adhere to the agreement he made with House conservatives."
The deal between McCarthy and the group of House conservatives, of which Gaetz was a leader, happened after 14 unsuccessful tries by McCarthy to get enough Republican votes in January to be speaker.
Among the deal's stipulations were pledges to make it harder to raise taxes, mandate new spending be paid for, open special panels to probe the Biden administration, and power share with Freedom Caucus members.
However, Gaetz said McCarthy eventually did not live up to the promises.
"Kevin McCarthy broke so many of the promises he made in January," Gaetz said. "We started to see the House of Representatives revert back to its corrupt, old muscle memory of just omnibus bills, continuing resolutions, and more of the same."
But the "last straw" for Gaetz before he brought up the motion to vacate was an alleged agreement between the Biden administration and McCarthy to put forth new aid for Ukraine despite GOP opposition.
The former speaker has consistently denied that any such deal was discussed.
Now that McCarthy is removed from the role and has announced his intention not to seek it again, Gaetz wants the lower chamber to start finding a replacement as soon as possible – preferably by "tomorrow."
He criticized Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., the acting speaker pro tempore, for adjourning the House until late next week.
"But instead, these people got to go home and cry for a week? They have got to go do a week of hand-wringing and bedwetting over the fact that Kevin McCarthy isn't speaker anymore? This institution is about more than one man," Gaetz insisted.
About NEWSMAX TV:
NEWSMAX is the fastest-growing cable news channel in America!
Luca Cacciatore, a Newsmax general assignment writer, is based in Arlington, Virginia, reporting on news and politics.
© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.