Gates, Green Tests Republican Leaders and Shows Off a New Path to Power


Washington (AP) — Parliamentary leaders have always faced rebels in their ranks. However, Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene are presenting a test to Congressmen on how to handle a new breed of fire brand familiar with social media in the Trump era.

Floridian third-year student Gates and Georgia freshman Green have recently received more attention than most lawmakers. Many were not positive.

It’s a question about whether two solid provocatives could undermine Republican’s goal of gaining House control in next year’s elections, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Caliph. Facing. The leader, if any, must decide what to do with them and what actions will affect their supporters from the Republican’s solid conservative foundation.

“These are people operating in their own bubble,” said former Republican lawmaker Tom Davies, who led the Republican campaign in the House of Representatives. “They know how to get coverage, they don’t worry about being too exorbitant.”

“They have absolutely safe seats,” Davis said.

However, the Justice Department is investigating whether Gates violated the Sex Trafficking Act and had sex with a 17-year-old girl. McCarthy suggested taking action if Gates was prosecuted..

And the note linked to the green explained what was suggested America’s first caucuse He praised the “Political Tradition of Anglo-Saxon”, warned of immigrant threats to the “unique culture” of the United States, and urged McCarthy to blame the “immigrant exclusion dog whistle.”

Gates denied accusations against him, Explained by people familiar with the survey. He has not been charged with crime and states that he has “never resigned.”

Green called the caucuse memo a staff-level proposal that she had never read from an outside group she did not identify. “America First” “accepts people of all races, beliefs and colors,” she added, “I will never retreat.”

Unlike most legislators, they have a source of power that leaders are hard to control. Their officials are collecting a lot of money, collecting social media followers, appearing frequently on television, representing a very conservative district, and still idolized by the Republican corps. This includes forming an alliance with former President Donald Trump.

The relationship with Trump “gives a lot of psychological power to the fire brand to know they are in a fairly safe place,” said a former Republican, a hardline conservative who fought the leader. Rep. Dave Brad said.

“In the past, if you wanted to improve your profile like Matt Gaetz or Marjorie Taylor Greene, you would run for president,” said another conservative Thomas Massie, who clashed with leadership. Stated.

Gates’ 209 weekdays on three major cable television networks (almost all conservative Fox News) from January 2019 to last week, according to Media Matters, a liberal group that monitors online political activity. Appearance was exceeded only by the other five members of the Diet. Both his parliamentary and personal Twitter accounts boast at least one million followers.

“The really powerful people in this town are those who can be on TV and have discussions,” Gates told the producer of the 2019 HBO documentary The Swamp. “

Greene has had 400,000 Twitter followers in Congress since January, but hasn’t appeared on the top three cable networks during the day. She has appeared on the Trump-friendly One America News Network and Newsmax TV.

She also reported raising $ 3.2 million in the first three months of the year. According to Federal Election Commission statistics, this is more than double the $ 1.5 million of typical House Republican incumbents spent throughout the 2020 elections.

Gates reported raising $ 1.8 million by March.

“Celebrities have increased their ability to raise funds and become more popular, which is independent of traditional power structures,” said former Chairman John Bener, R-Ohio, and former White House Chief of Staff of other major Republicans. Michael Steele said.

The allegations against Gates, part of an extensive investigation of Florida Republican politicians, are so serious that whatever McCarthy does, it can threaten his political survival.

House Republican rules state that members charged with serious charges must resign from the committee, but House Republican rules do not vote for parliamentary seats if convicted. Members in such situations often resign or do not seek reelection.

The situation on the green is darker. In a recent case, after years of racist remarks by Iowa General Assembly Steve King, Republican leaders wonder why terms like “white supremacist” are offensive. I opposed him in 2019 when I questioned him. He did not resign, but lost the 2020 Republican primary.

Over Republican opposition, the Democratic majority’s House of Representatives stripped Green’s commission in February for violent remarks and online recycling of conspiracy theories. McCarthy blamed her for her remarks, but did not punish her.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) Has her own rebels, led by Congressman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (DN.Y.) and other progressive “squads.” But with a paper-thin majority of the party, all Democrats are under tremendous pressure to unite behind President Joe Biden’s agenda and give Pelosi more power.

McCarthy needs to get just a few seats to win house control and wouldn’t want to be distracted. Republicans want to focus on what they consider to be a target-rich environment, such as immigration on the southwestern border, Democratic proposals for tax increases for high-income earners and businesses, and the ongoing pandemic closure of the school system. I am.

“That’s a problem,” said Sarah Chamberlain, who heads the Republican Main Street Partnership, an alliance of dozens of Republican centrist politicians. Republican district, she said.

Parliamentary leaders can usually put pressure on lawmakers by threatening to reduce party-controlled election contributions. Gates and Green have already raised enough money to resist such pressure.

They can use their money to buy online ads that address the issue of hot buttons that tempt more Republican supporters and contributions, and donate to campaigns to win the support of colleagues. .. Greene has already reported that it has spent over $ 800,000 to build an online fundraising activity and Gaetz has spent over $ 500,000.

Election Funds reported that Green donated a healthy $ 175,000 to the Republican House of Representatives campaign department shortly before the Democratic Party stripped her committee of duty.

Gates donated to dozens of House Republicans last year.