Washington DC: In a fresh set of political drama unveiling in the United States, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy challenged Republican representative Matt Gaetz to “bring on” the motion to oust him, after the GOP leader announced about the same, CNN reported on Sunday.
This comes hours after the US was finally able to pass the spending bill, that can keep the economy afloat for the next 47 days.
Other than Gaetz, another Republican representative Eli Crane has voiced for supporting McCarthy’s ouster, increasing the tensions for the House Speaker.
After McCarthy relied on Democratic votes to pass a stopgap funding measure to avert a federal government shutdown Saturday night, several hardline conservatives have threatened that the move cost him his job, as per CNN.
“I do intend to file a motion to vacate against Speaker McCarthy this week. I think we need to rip off the Band-Aid. I think we need to move on with new leadership that can be trustworthy,” Gaetz told CNN.
“Look, the one thing everybody has in common is that nobody trusts Kevin McCarthy," he added.
"He lied to Biden, he lied to House conservatives. He had appropriators marking to a different number altogether. And the reason we were backed up against the shutdown politics is not a bug of the system. It’s a feature,” CNN quoted him as saying.
Gaetz further stated that he thinks Democrats would have to help McCarthy retain his speakership.
“The only way Kevin McCarthy is Speaker of the House at the end of this coming week is if Democrats bail him out. Now, they probably will. I actually think that when you believe in nothing, as Kevin McCarthy does, everything's negotiable — and I think he’ll cut a deal with the Democrats,” CNN quoted him as saying.
If Democrats do help McCarthy retain his speakership, “he will be their speaker, not mine,” he added.
Responding to this, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy urged Gaetz to “bring it on”.
“That’s nothing new,” McCarthy said on CBS "Face the Nation."
"I’ll survive…You know this is personal with Matt. Matt voted against the most conservative ability to protect our border, secure our border. He’s more interested in securing TV interviews than doing something,” CNN quoted him as saying.
“So be it — bring it on. Let’s get over with it and let’s start governing,” McCarthy added.
When asked about Ukraine aid, which is missing from Congress' stopgap bill, McCarthy insinuated that he would want the funding tied to increasing border security.
“They’re not going to get some package if the border is not secure,” McCarthy said. “I support being able to make sure Ukraine has the weapons that they need. But I firmly support the border first. So we’ve got to find a way that we can do this together.”
Republican Representative Eli Crane, one of the hardliners who has been critical of Rep. Kevin McCarthy, signalled support for ousting the speaker.
“Lets roll!” Crane posted on social media platform X on Sunday in response to GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz’s post saying he will file a so-called motion to vacate this week.
Crane and Gaetz are so far the only Republicans who have publicly backed the effort, though others are weighing it, according to CNN.
Notably, if all Democrats support the motion, Gaetz only needs six Republicans to succeed.
Although, Democrats have not taken an official position, but many in the caucus are sceptical of saving McCarthy — though some may vote present, which would raise the number of votes Gaetz needs, CNN reported.