Gaetz to seek McCarthy ouster over government shutdown deal, Speaker counters with 'I'll survive'

“I think we need to move on with new leadership that can be trustworthy,” the Florida Republican said.

Published: October 1, 2023 9:47am

Updated: October 1, 2023 12:54pm

Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz declared Sunday he will seek to oust Kevin McCarthy as House speaker after a drama-filled scramble to pass a federal budget forced a last-minute temporary spending bill that required Democrat votes to pass.

McCarthy dismissed the threat, saying “I’ll survive.”

Gaetz, leader of a wing of fiscal conservatives that wanted all 12 federal agency spending bills passed instead of a continuing resolution, said McCarthy’s maneuvering on Saturday violated the deal he made in January to become speaker.

“I do intend to file a motion to vacate against Speaker McCarthy this week,” Gaetz told CNN on Sunday morning. “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 had threatened last week in an interview with Just the News to seek a motion to vacate against McCarthy if the speaker worked with Democrats on a temporary spending bill.

McCarthy brushed off the threat, suggesting his antagonist was more interested in TV appearances than governing.

"I'll survive," McCarthy told CBS's "Face the Nation." "He's more interested in securing TV interviews." 

"Let's get over with it. Let's start governing. If he's upset because he tried to push us into a shutdown and I made sure government didn't shut down, then let's have that talk," the speaker added.

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