Gosar and MTG rewarded for threats of violence? House Speaker Donald Trump? Everything appears to be on the table
As member after member of the House Republican caucus took the dais Wednesday to speak during debate over whether to censure fellow Rep. Paul Gosar, the topic of conversation quickly turned from what the Arizona Republican did — post an anime video in which an animated version of himself brutally murdered Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — to all the ways a conservative majority would retaliate against Democrats and reward its own members who had stood strong in the face of harsh public criticism.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the likely future House speaker if Republicans retake the majority next year, doubled down on the us-versus-them rhetoric Thursday during a press conference — even adding at one point that he planned to reinstate the committee assignments of both Gosar and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, who was stripped of hers earlier this year after similarly endorsing violence against Democratic politicians. McCarthy even suggested he might reward the right-wing duo with better assignments for their refusal to apologize or equivocate.
“They’ll have committees,” McCarthy vowed. “The committee assignment they have now, they may have other committee assignments, they may have better committee assignments.”
Another idea floated by former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on Thursday was to elect Donald Trump as speaker of the House — which is not outside the realm of possibility, since the speaker doesn’t have to be an elected member of Congress. (Though all of them have been so far.) Meadows didn’t even bother framing that as a good idea for the country or the House — just as a way to seek revenge against Democrats.
From the Washington Post:
Republicans have proved they are quite willing to exploit their hold on the levers of power before, and they’ve seen the political utility of the kind of burn-it-all-down approach that Donald Trump embodied. In that context, the fact that they’d threaten to pursue such retribution shouldn’t be totally surprising, but nor should we discount what it could mean for the future of governance in this country. And that is in many ways the point of the exercise.