Congress escaped a government shutdown with a spending deal that cost Republicans border security funds and cuts. Dissatisfied Republicans are blaming Representative Matt Gaetz (R-FL) for his stubbornness, with Representative Carlos Gimenez (R-FL) calling him "Joe Biden's favorite Republican" during an appearance on Fox News.
When asked if he supported expelling Rep. Gaetz, as some Republicans seek to do, Rep. Gimenez answered that he would look at the charges first, as "expelling a member of the House is a very serious concern."
"And I have serious disagreements with Mr. Gaetz. I think that he is actually Joe Biden's favorite Republican because he causes a lot of confusion and dissension inside the Party itself. If it were not for Matt Gaetz, we would have had a funding resolution that actually controlled the border and would have had close to 10% cuts in government, but because of Matt Gaetz, we did not get either of those," said Rep. Gimenez.
Additionally, Gimenez explained how a government shutdown is more detrimental to the American people than its perceived benefit since money is lost rather than saved. Moreover, Gimenez sarcastically noted that illegal migrants crossing the southern border should say "Gracias Matt Gaetz" for forcing Republicans to compromise on a less-than-ideal spending resolution.
The conversation shifted to Gaetz's threatening to introduce a motion to vacate Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). Gimenez said he would rather keep McCarthy, noting that regardless of who replaces him, he "will have to be forced to work with the Democrats" anyway, questioning Gaetz's motives for wanting to vacate McCarthy.
"So thank you, Matt Gaetz, for giving us a coalition government where we do not actually have the majority. So exactly who the heck are you working for? Are you really a Republican or a Democrat in disguise? I have serious concerns about Matt Gaetz," Gimenez continued.
Host Arthel Neville asked why Gimenez framed working with the Democrats as bad when bipartisanship is a goal of Congress. Gimenez clarified that while that was ideal, "we were voted here by the people that we represent, and we need to make sure that we stop the Biden agenda."
As a result, "somebody who now has to make a deal with the Democrats is going to soften some of the things that we want, the majority wants. And so Matt Gaetz is actually working against Republican principles. And so, in that sense, I think he is Joe Biden's favorite Republican. I am sure that the Democrats, behind closed doors, when they hear "Matt Gaetz," a big smile comes on their face."