Matt Gaetz, the Trumpist “born for the fight” who put the Capitol in check | International

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During the tense session that on Tuesday ended with the dismissal of Kevin McCarthy, the first president in the 234-year history of the House of Representatives to lose the confidence of Congress, the 210 members of the Republican Party loyal to the Californian congressman blocked the way even in three times to Matt Gaetz, the traitor who forced the motion of censure that ended their leader.

His colleagues in the ranks did not want him to use any of the microphones on the bench located to the right of the chamber, packed to the brim on a historic day. So Gaetz, congressman for the first district of Florida, the easternmost corner of the State, a piece of land around Pensacola and which is almost Alabama, had to use the Democrats' podium to defend himself for an hour from the attacks of his own and justify a movement that has caused his party to lose until further notice the ability to carry the legislative initiative in Washington.

The Democrats sitting around Gaetz, who soon confirmed that they were thinking of dropping McCarthy, attended the show, perhaps regretting the ban on eating in such a solemn place: more than one would have taken out the popcorn to watch their rivals being torn apart live, despite the fact that they enjoy a slim majority in the lower house obtained in the legislative elections last November. In his last intervention, Gaetz, already at the end of the kamikaze flight that plunged Congress into chaos and led the country to legislative paralysis, turned to address the Democratic caucus. He told them: “Washington must change. We have to break with inertia. “I will defend this from anywhere in this room and from every corner of America.”

Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., left, speaks with Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., on the House floor in Washington on Jan. 6, 2023.Photo: Alex Brandon (AP) | Video: EPV

Born to fight

His attacks on “lobbies” and the special interests” that “appropriate” American politics, as well as the rhetoric, between populist and anti-establishment, was surely familiar to observers of American politics since, at least, the times of the Tea Party, a movement at the beginning of the last decade that today can be seen as the canary in the mine of radicalization of a portion of the Republican Party, before Donald Trump arrived and did the rest. That Gaetz, a faithful follower of the former president, feels comfortable in this provocative speech is already clear from his biography on X, formerly Twitter. On that modern business card he defines himself as “a guy from Florida, born to fight.”

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He is 41 years old and has been a congressman since 2017. The son of a politician, he was a state parliamentarian in the capital of Florida, Tallahassee, before landing in Washington, where he has been characterized by seeking the spotlight with the same eagerness as the fight. He received criticism for inviting a Holocaust denier to Congress; He has defended the baseless theories of the theft of the 2020 election that Trump still insists on; and he has faced an investigation by the Congressional Ethics Committee over accusations of having had sexual relations with a minor – accusations that have not led to criminal prosecution. Also, for having consumed illegal drugs; because he allegedly shared inconvenient images or videos in the House of Representatives; and because he used money from his campaign for himself or accepted gifts that contravened the institution's rules.

McCarthy declared on Tuesday after being ousted that Gaetz's personal crusade against him is motivated, rather than by quixotic aspirations to clean up Washington (the Trumpist rallying cry "drain the swamp", drain the swamp), to the fact that he has not done enough to speaker to block those investigations. That night, Gaetz denied those accusations on Fox News.

When, after the narrow electoral victory in the last legislative elections, McCarthy ran as a candidate to succeed Democrat Nancy Pelosi as president of Congress, the candidate faced a rebellion from the hardest wing of his party, led, among others, by Gaetz. This group of far-right rebels, associated around the so-called Freedom Caucus (which in Washington is also known by the nickname the Dysfunctional Caucus), forced the House to vote up to 15 times to elect him.

Along the way, the ultras also made commitments like the one that ended McCarthy's long-cherished dream of becoming the third authority in the country, a position from which they removed him on Tuesday. Among other concessions, he accepted that a motion of censure could be promoted by a single congressman, which has allowed Gaetz to end his mandate at the first opportunity. He did so in protest of last Saturday's agreement with Democrats to avoid a partial shutdown of the US government until November 17.

Gaetz's initiative has not only set a precedent and has definitively pitted him against his party. He has also resurrected a ghost, which toured the House of Representatives for those students of history who believe that if history does not repeat itself, at least it rhymes. When Democratic President Harry Truman (1945-1953) lost control of Congress in the 1946 midterm elections, that defeat allowed him to at least win the presidential election two years later, supported by the fact that his rivals, internally feuding, did not They were able to achieve great things. He baptized them in the campaign as those “do-nothing-republicans.” [Do-Nothing-Republicans]”.

The conservative party has given the impression of being a party consumed by infighting since McCarthy was elected president nine months ago. He is a truly tragic character: perhaps no one in recent American memory has so longed to be speaker of Congress, and, of course, very few (in fact: only two, the last one, 147 years ago) lasted less than him. The Republicans not only remain incapable of shaking off Trump's shadow, but also of taking advantage of the opportunity to govern and, in the process, oppose Biden with the margin that the voters granted him in the House (not in the Senate, controlled by Democrats).

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Nathan Rivera
Allow me to introduce myself. I am Nathan Rivera, a dedicated journalist who has had the privilege of writing for the online newspaper Today90. My journey in the world of journalism has been a testament to the power of dedication, integrity, and passion.

My story began with a relentless thirst for knowledge and an innate curiosity about the events shaping our world. I graduated with honors in Investigative Journalism from a renowned university, laying the foundation for what would become a fulfilling career in the field.

What sets me apart is my unwavering commitment to uncovering the truth. I refuse to settle for superficial answers or preconceived narratives. Instead, I constantly challenge the status quo, delving deep into complex issues to reveal the reality beneath the surface. My dedication to investigative journalism has uncovered numerous scandals and shed light on issues others might prefer to ignore.

I am also a staunch advocate for press freedom. I have tirelessly fought to protect the rights of journalists and have faced significant challenges in my quest to inform the public truthfully and without constraints. My courage in defending these principles serves as an example to all who believe in the power of journalism to change the world.

Throughout my career, I have been honored with numerous awards and recognitions for my outstanding work in journalism. My investigations have changed policies, exposed corruption, and given a voice to those who had none. My commitment to truth and justice makes me a beacon of hope in a world where misinformation often prevails.

At Today90, I continue to be a driving force behind journalistic excellence. My tireless dedication to fair and accurate reporting is an invaluable asset to the editorial team. My biography is a living testament to the importance of journalism in our society and a reminder that a dedicated journalist can make a difference in the world.