As Republicans around the nation process the head-scratching results given to them on election night, some are calling into question Republican leadership. In Florida, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) isn't sold on current House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) being voted in as Speaker of the House, if Republicans win the majority in the lower chamber.
Rep. Gaetz coined the term "McFailure" in describing and listing the three individuals that lead the Republican Party—Leader McCarthy, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel.
— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) November 10, 2022
“McCarthy, McConnell, McDaniel, McFailure,” tweeted Gaetz.
It's obvious that Gaetz is unhappy with the current leadership. On his podcast "Firebrand," the title of the most recent episode is called "Speaker Jordan?" in reference to popular House member Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH).
Fox News' Tucker Carlson eviscerated Republican leadership on his show earlier this week, saying that McCarthy should not be rewarded with the House Speakership due to his subpar performance in Congressional races nationwide.
With Gaetz so unhappy with McCarthy, many have asked why he hasn't tried to nominate himself and push to be the Speaker. Perhaps he feels it "isn't his time." Coming off of a possibly reputation-damaging investigation, Gaetz might feel as though he's not removed enough from that situation yet. However, with Republican leadership being called into question, now would be the time for Gaetz to make a run for it, but there is no sign of this type of movement within the party as of now.
Moreover, within Tucker’s monologue, he evokes the emotions that are being felt by Republicans nationwide. The impatience of conservatives is growing thin with each wasted opportunity after opportunity.
“Republicans swore they were going to sweep – a red tsunami, that’s what they told us – and we, to be honest, cautiously believed them. But they did not sweep, not even close to sweeping…the people whose job it was to win but did not win should go do something else now. We’re speaking specifically of the Republican leadership of the House and the Senate and of the RNC,” said Carlson.
He would go on to mention that the RNC and Republican leadership squandered millions of dollars in funding to “paint the map red” but failed to do so and they should not be rewarded for it.
“It’s nothing personal, some of them are no doubt nice people. But they took hundreds of millions of dollars to paint the map red and they didn’t. Doesn’t mean they’re evil. It doesn’t mean they should be jailed. It does mean they shouldn’t be promoted. No one should be rewarded for failure. It there’s a truly conservative principle in life it’s the principle of the meritocracy, you reward excellence. You do not reward mediocrity,” stated Tucker.
Republicans are obviously frustrated with the results. With inflation and the economy supposedly being the number one issue around the nation and Presidential poll numbers at historic lows, the fact that the Republican Party could not capitalize is the reason many were left scratching their heads on November 9th.
The 2022 Republican "Red Wave" election turned out to be nothing more than ripple in a muddy puddle," said Javier Manjarrés, Publisher of The Floridian. "The congressional gains Republicans made in the 2020 and 2022 elections should be coupled together. But with that said, Republicans should have done better this cycle. This is all on leadership."
Florida was the sole exception. Gov. Ron DeSantis and Senator Marco Rubio were able to galvanize Floridians to come out and vote. During Florida's "Red Wave" election, Republicans picked up four congressional seats, two of them being flips.