MAGA Rep. Matt Gaetz’s Refusal to Take Lobbyist, PAC Money Makes Him a True Voter Advocate
It’s a new week, and democracy is alive and well in the freest country on Earth. Yes, the world has continued to turn even with it taking 15 votes to solidify Congressman Kevin McCarthy as Speaker of the House.
All of this might be surprising to you if you bought into the mainstream media hysteria over the historical activity on the floor of the House last week.
Suppose you only took one thing from those events. In that case, it should be the realization that mainstream media and the overwhelming majority of your elected leaders, both left and right, want the continued broken, business-as-usual status quo for D.C.
It was perhaps the squeakiest wheel in the political machine that had everyone in an apoplectic fit: MAGA Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida.
Congressman Gaetz held firm to his plans to make now-Speaker McCarthy work for what he has coveted for so long.
While I’m personally not a huge fan of Mr. Gaetz, if you are an honest performance broker, he deserves a hat tip for doing precisely what he promised.
So what is it that makes Mr. Gaetz perhaps the most powerful man in the Republican Party? This:
Matt Gaetz refusing corporate PAC money – rare for GOP – appears to allow more freedom for maverick positions. He bucks the establishment on unique votes like joining Bernie to end the war in Yemen and this leadership fight. Even if you completely disagree w him, seems notable.
— Lee Fang (@lhfang) January 8, 2023
Slave To No Purse
Representative Gaetz can be so bold on the House floor because of his commitment to refuse cash from political action committees (PACs).
Back in 2020, he rightly explained:
“Honest capitalism is under attack. Not just from Bernie Sanders, antifa and the radical left – but by special interests and political action committees in the swamp of Washington D.C.”
Those of us parents felt this influence by Big Education as lobbyists beholden to the teachers unions helped sway policy and lawmakers to support and enact destructive education policies aimed at protecting the unions versus teachers and students.
Mr. Gaetz went on to throw shade evenly across political parties:
“Irrespective of which party is in power the winner in Congress is often the special interest that shuttles the most money to political campaigns.”
What does the Congressman mean by this accusation? Those who are the most in the pocket of special interests, including leadership PACs, are the ones who generally get the most opportunities in Congress for influence.
This brings us to his recent performance in the House.
NEW: Matt Gaetz calls for the exoneration of Jan 6 attendees who were wrongfully targeted by the far-left January 6 committee.
Do you support this?
— Collin Rugg (@CollinRugg) January 9, 2023
Congressman Gaetz made it very clear how he felt about Kevin McCarthy and his bid to become Speaker of the House. He once called Representative McCarthy the “Lebron James of special interest fundraising.” He said his bid for Speaker was an “exercise in vanity driven by personal ambition.”
He capped off his criticism by warning that:
“That ambition is paralyzing the House now.”
And to his point, Kevin McCarthy is a prolific fundraiser. Last year in the first quarter alone, he brought in $31.5 million. So there is something to Mr. Gaetz’s argument that most of the GOP rallying behind Mr. McCarthy last week indeed had at least some part of his ability to bring in cash and control that cash.
As Mr. Gaetz put it, the loyalty to Mr. McCarthy is:
“…a covenant based on money.”
However, Mr. Gaetz didn’t sell his soul to this particular covenant, which freed him from being roped into the pressure game of GOP politics-as-usual last week.
So what did last week’s performance by Congressman Gaetz do for American voters?
More than the mainstream media wants you to know.
Matt Gaetz has done more to defend American freedom in the last week than Joe Biden has in his entire 50 years in politics.
— Brigitte Gabriel (@ACTBrigitte) January 8, 2023
How Should It Work
Regardless of which news outlet you fancy, you’ve undoubtedly heard the argument that Speaker McCarthy had to essentially give up one of his kidneys to the “terrorists” that held the “good work” of the 118th Congress hostage.
But let’s take a look at what Gaetz and the other holdouts managed to accomplish:
- Single member vote to oust Speaker
- Votes on lawmaker term limits and border security
- Pro-McCarthy PAC stays out of ‘safe’ primary races
- Select Committee on Weaponization of DOJ
- 72 hours to read bills before going to the floor for a vote
- Reveal salaries of government officials
This has never been about me or Kevin McCarthy. It's about the American people.
America wants to know that the rules of the House of Reps would never allow something like this horrendous omnibus bill to ever pass ever again.
— Rep. Matt Gaetz (@RepMattGaetz) January 7, 2023
They also secured at least promised for votes on several bills, covering topics from abortion, repealing funding for Biden’s 87,000 new IRS agents, and bills aimed at limiting illegal immigration.
Essentially the Speaker’s position is significantly weakened, which is a good thing; one person should not be able to overpower duly elected representatives, and many highly popular issues by voters are now realities.
However, if you ask Florida Representative Michael Waltz, this was all setting a bad example for the rest of the world, stating:
“Authoritarian regimes all over the world are pointing to what’s going on in the House of Representatives and saying, ‘Look at the messiness of democracy, look at how it doesn’t work, can’t function.'”
While this possibility is true, it’s only because most authoritarian regimes don’t understand how democracy let alone a representative democracy, should work, just like Congressman Waltz and his group of GOP lackeys also appear not to understand the concept.
Democracy at its best is messy, and allowing for all the voices of those elected by constituents to be heard with equal footing is the point of the whole damn process.
The Truth Hurts
The benefit of having Matt Gaetz in Congress is that he is unpredictable to the political elite, accountable to no one but his constituents, and has proven time and time again that he will buck the system when the system needs bucking. He also speaks the truth even when it is inconvenient and downright ugly.
Congressman Gaetz took multiple hits when he said after the midterms that the Republican agenda in the House should not be to:
“…hold hands in the warm spring rain with the Democrats, it is to investigate them, hold them accountable, and we can do that without the Senate, without the White House.”
With the Senate and the White House still within the clutches of the Democrats, hopes for any actual policy or legislative movement are a fool’s errand, which is the point Mr. Gaetz makes in his statement.
So why not do what the House can do without the Senate and White House?
“…that’s why it should be investigations first (and) policy, bill-making to support the lobbyists and the PACs as a far, far diminished priority.”
It would be easy to twist this statement to mean he doesn’t care about doing the work of making the lives of the American voter easier, and mainstream media certainly did twist away. But the reality is he is merely telling the American voter what the ground truth is.
Nothing of any real value will get past the Senate or President Biden; anything that will make it past will only serve special interests and the political elite.
Finally, and perhaps my favorite thing about Mr. Gaetz, is he’s not beholden to the altar of Trump.
This is going to be a very meaningful oversight tool.
Credit to ALL the negotiators who helped strengthen the House in such tangible ways. https://t.co/NFFSoXjxkH
— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) January 8, 2023
Back in 2020, he said:
“Remember our independence from special interests is our loyalty to America and the America First movement that President Trump began…”
Yet President Trump attempted to pressure the 20 holdouts into caving to the system last week. So perhaps it is Matt Gaetz who puts America and Americans first, not Trump and his loyal subjects.
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