Steve Bannon, a former aide to former President Donald Trump, said Friday that Rep. Matt Gaetz, a Florida Republican, will essentially be the “de facto” Speaker of the House of Representatives in the next Congress.
His comments come after House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy offered a key concession to Conservatives who criticized his bid as Speaker, CNN reported Friday, citing Republican sources familiar with the private talks McCarthy was having with the GOP lawmakers led.
In a phone interview on Saturday, Bannon said news week that there is “no chance” that Gaetz will be elected Speaker of the House of Representatives. However, he added that Florida Republican and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Georgia Republican, together will be the “de facto” speakers, or “the actual speaker.” [but] not in reality” of the house.
McCarthy, a California Republican, has conceded lowering the threshold needed to push for a choice of words known as an eviction request to remove a sitting speaker. The House GOP leader hopes the move will help him garner support from his critics.
Members of the House Freedom Caucus have long pushed for the concession, which Politico said would tarnish McCarthy’s standing if he became speaker.
During his internal talks with lawmakers, McCarthy appeared open to a five-person threshold, according to CNN. The majority of the GOP House of Representatives is now expected to call for a motion to vacate the speaker’s chair, with some Conservatives pushing for a single member to force such a vote.
However, moderate Republicans might think the five-person threshold is too low and might gravitate towards a 50-person threshold. But conservative GOP members, including Gaetz and South Carolina Rep. Ralph Norman, think a five-person threshold is too high.
Norman told CNN that he thought the so-called request to clear the threshold should be reduced to two or fewer, while Gatez said McCarthy should reduce that number to one.
Gaetz is one of the Republicans opposing McCarthy’s bid for the speakership and previously said the GOP leader is not fully meeting the party’s goals.
Meanwhile, Greene recently expressed her support for McCarthy and vowed to vote for him — a move one policy expert, Joseph Uscinski, said is intended to help her have more influence in Congress.
Bannon on Saturday outlined some of the possible reasons some GOP lawmakers are criticizing McCarthy.
“The problem with Kevin isn’t that people don’t like him, Kevin is very popular. It has nothing to do with that,” Bannon said news week. “It really has to do with what the Republican Party stands for. What does MAGA stand for and how are we going to resolve this situation?” MAGA is an acronym for “Make America Great Again,” which Trump repeatedly used as a campaign slogan at his rallies.
Bannon added that one of the big concerns of McCarthy’s critics is what he really stands for.
“For the last 48, 72 hours, people have been like, ‘Well, get hold of it. This guy is willing to reveal things he never said [he would],'” Bannon said.
He added that McCarthy “under no circumstances” will “ever take the office of speaker,” while he “has to do it by abandoning the motion to evict because he would never really have the freedom to do what.” he wants to do”.
The former Trump aide described the speakership debate as a “proxy war” between the “corporatist” side of the Republican Party and the “popular face of MAGA.”
“That’s what this fight is about,” he said. “And it’s obviously exemplified by the extreme right against … the corporate wing of the party.”
news week reached out to McCarthy’s office for comment.
https://www.newsweek.com/matt-gaetz-will-de-facto-speaker-after-mccarthy-concessions-bannon-1770588 Matt Gaetz will be “de facto” speaker following McCarthy’s concessions: Bannon