McCarthy: Gaetz Will Meet Same Fate as George Santos

Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy says an ongoing ethics investigation into Matt Gaetz could potentially lead to the Florida Congressman’s expulsion, mirroring the same situation facing Rep. George Santos of New York.

In a new interview on Fox News ‘Sunday Morning Futures,’ an embittered McCarthy continued to assail Gaetz after being ousted from the speakership last month. The California Republican suggested that his ouster and Gaetz’s clash with the GOP stems from the Florida Congressman’s attempts to divert attention from an ongoing ethics probe.

“We do know this is really driven, as you know and you’ve had on your show, Matt Gaetz’s ethics complaint,” McCarthy said.

Gaetz currently faces accusations of sexual misconduct and illicit drug use. Gaetz has repeatedly denied the allegations, with federal prosecutors declining to pursue charges earlier this year. A Federal Election Commission probe in September also cleared Gaetz on accusations of misusing campaign funds to pay his legal bills.

McCarthy nonetheless drew a comparison to fellow Congressman George Santos, who is currently facing a 23-page indictment and allegations of using campaign funds for personal use.

“I think once that ethics complaint comes forward, he could have the same problem as Santos has.”

“I think the conference would probably be better united to be able to move forward and get this all done,” McCarthy added.

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“I am the most investigated man in the United States Congress. It seems that the Ethics Committee’s interest in me waxes and wanes based on my relationship with the speaker,” Gaetz said about the probe last month, shortly after motioning to vacate McCarthy from the speakership.

On Sunday, the Florida Republican’s office defended his record, saying the current probe is based on “lies.”

“The ethics complaint against Congressman Matt Gaetz emerged from a years old, anonymous, debunked New York Times story. Since then, Rep. Gaetz has been exonerated by the DOJ, the FEC, and through the criminal convictions of those spreading lies about him,” the statement says.

“By contrast, the ethics complaint against the former Speaker emerges from an assault, two eyewitnesses, an audio recording, and a pattern of allegations regarding the same conduct, reduced to writing and published. Yet, the dispositive difference is that McCarthy personally appointed every Republican on the Ethics Committee, some of whom have expressed explicit desire to retaliate against Rep. Gaetz.”

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The statement referenced comments made by fellow Florida Congressman John Rutherford in the wake of McCarthy’s ousting as evidence of a “retaliatory” campaign against Gaetz.

“Notably, Rep. Rutherford explicitly referenced retaliation against Rep. Gaetz as his driving motivation in opposing Rep. Jim Jordan to become Speaker,” the statement from Gaetz’s office reads. “‘I’m a no on allowing Matt Gaetz…to win,’ Rep. Rutherford said. He went on to release an even stronger retaliatory statement about Rep. Gaetz, concluding: ‘[Gaetz’s] disrespect for his colleagues, this institution, and the people we serve is a clear reflection of his lacking fitness to serve in Congress…’ All this over removing McCarthy. Sad!”

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