As the House of Representatives reconvened today, excited and hopeful that a new round of balloting would get Rep. Kevin McCarthy his gavel. But it was not to be. Another round of voting closed without meeting the threshold required to elect a speaker. The only winners thus far are Democrats, who look like a formidable force together, and C-SPAN ratings.
So, with the dreams and wishes of the Republicans dashed, the fury and finger-pointing drifted over to the top-rated cable news channel, Fox News. The recriminations were palpable as Tucker Carlson suggested that maybe McCarthy didn’t really want to be the House speaker, and Newt Gingrich told the Fox & Friends ghouls that every Republican lawmaker who didn’t support McCarthy was and is a “blackmailing idiot.”
Sean Hannity opened his show Tuesday with a stinging indictment of House Republicans, saying they are “on the verge of becoming a total clown show if they’re not careful.”
Carlson slammed McCarthy, suggesting he do something “real” to win back the Republicans staunchly voting against him.
“He’s going to have to give them actual concessions. […] He’s going to have to do things he would never do otherwise,” Carlson said. Then he suggested that McCarthy start by releasing the Jan. 6 files. “Put them online,” he said. “Release them to the public directly. So the rest of us can finally know what actually happened on January 6th. […] It’s been two years. It’s long overdue.”
On Fox Business, Rep. Mike Waltz, a Republican from Florida and supporter of McCarthy, told host Stuart Varney that the shit show that is the failed House speaker vote is “embarrassing for America,” adding that it’s turning the GOP into a “laughingstock.”
“You should be in the room, Stu,” Waltz said. “The Democrats are laughing; they’re cackling. And the thing that makes me so frustrated as a veteran is that it’s not just the Democrats laughing, it’s the Biden administration, it’s the Chinese Communist Party, the Russians, the North Koreans, the Iranians who’re pointing to democracy and calling it dysfunctional, saying, ‘You better side with us and not this form of government.’”
Okay, hyperbolic boy, slow down. Yes, we’re all laughing, but I doubt anyone thinks it means democracy is dead and the U.S. should move to communism or totalitarianism just because McCarthy doesn’t get his way. Entitled, much?
Hannity spent his monologue Tuesday pushing Republican holdouts to remember that McCarthy vowed to investigate Hunter Biden.
“Sometimes you have to think through politics. Now, McCarthy has already publicly laid out his Commitment to America plan. That is exactly the America-first, MAGA agenda that so many of you I know like,” he said.
Gingrich told Fox & Friends that the Republicans refusing to vote for McCarthy were “gonna lose” and asked if their supporters back home, who thought they were electing a Republican, were expected to “cheerfully reelect a blackmailer?”
He went on to call the 20 Republicans voting against McCarthy “blackmailing idiots… signing their resignation letters.”
What better way to start the year than by previewing the biggest contests of 2023 on this week’s episode of The Downballot? Progressives will want to focus on a Jan. 10 special election for the Virginia state Senate that would allow them to expand their skinny majority; the April 4 battle for the Wisconsin Supreme Court that could let progressives take control from conservatives; Chicago’s mayoral race; gubernatorial contests in Kentucky and Louisiana; and much, much more.
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