Already a member? Log In

Gaetz Crimes & the McCarthy Morality Tale

Kevin McCarthy’s exit was more or less preordained from the moment he gave Matt Gaetz the power to initiate a no-confidence vote.
Kevin McCarthy’s exit was more or less preordained from the moment he gave Matt Gaetz the power to initiate a no-confidence vote. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Tina Nguyen
October 4, 2023

The funny thing about Kevin McCarthy’s recent defenestration—and yes, it was a little bit funny—is that despite their neverending frustration with him, I rarely got the sense that the MAGA lawmaker constituency actually wanted him gone. Sure, he would sometimes do things that pissed them off, like cutting the occasional deal with Democrats, or sacrificing MAGA priorities such as defunding the Ukraine war to the higher calling of a functional government.