Speaker McCarthy: ‘I Believe It’s Personal’ With Rep. Gaetz

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy of California criticized Rep. Matt Gaetz from Florida, suggesting that Gaetz’s move to remove him from his position was based on personal differences.

Speaking on “The Record With Greta Van Susteren,” McCarthy expressed disappointment in Gaetz for opposing a key House GOP proposal, which advocated for budget reductions and heightened border protection. He indicated Gaetz’s actions were inconsistent with conservative principles.

“I’m inclined to think this is personal for Matt,” McCarthy stated. “Notably, he didn’t back me for the Speaker role. His vote wasn’t conservative, considering he opposed the widely supported conservative measure.”

McCarthy emphasized his conservative stance and the importance of the resolution, “As a conservative, I believe in achieving results through conservative methods. Had the resolution I proposed been approved, which most of our members supported, we would be witnessing a fortified border, reduced expenditures, and overall enhanced positioning.”

Additionally, McCarthy alluded to an ongoing inquiry into Gaetz by the House Ethics Committee, initiated by the previous Democrat-majority Congress. He hinted that Gaetz might be disgruntled because McCarthy didn’t intervene in the matter. Reports from The Hill suggest Gaetz is under scrutiny for various allegations, including misconduct of a sexual nature and substance abuse, though no claims have been substantiated yet.

Addressing an earlier claim by Gaetz, McCarthy dismissed rumors that he and President Joe Biden had a covert agreement to secure aid for Ukraine after a specific bill’s approval. While initial versions of the bill intended to allocate significant support to Ukraine, the final version that was ratified lacked those provisions.

McCarthy stated, “I can firmly say there’s no covert agreement with President Biden. I haven’t had any discussions with him for a long time. I’m unsure where Matt gets his information.”

McCarthy’s remarks came shortly before Gaetz made his official move, a culmination of growing discord between McCarthy and some staunchly conservative House GOP members.

For the motion to be successful, it merely requires a majority of the total House votes. The vote is slated for two legislative days from now, unless there are procedural moves to delay it.