“It’s incredibly undermining,” Biggs said Tuesday in an interview with the right-wing newspaper One America News. He added, “We have our leader basically negotiating with Liz Cheney about whether he should encourage President Trump to step down or not. It becomes a huge trust issue for me.
A now Twitter-banned ‘Stop the Steal’ organizer says three GOP lawmakers helped plan his DC rally
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) was the third member of the House Republican leadership until her peers ousted her from her post last May because she continued to challenge Trump for his false assertion that which the 2020 election was stolen. Cheney is now one of two Republicans on the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack and is among the former president’s most vocal GOP critics.
The New York Times first reported McCarthy’s remarks on the Jan. 10, 2021, call last week, during which McCarthy said of Trump, “I’m sick of this guy. What he did is unacceptable. Nobody can defend that, and nobody should defend it.
On the recording, McCarthy can also be heard telling House Republicans that he planned to tell Trump that “it would be my recommendation that you resign.”
McCarthy initially refuse the New York Times reports his comments, calling them “totally untrue and misguided”. After The Times published the audio of the phone call, McCarthy told reporters that he “never thought that [Trump] should resign. He has since dodged questions on the subject. On Monday, McCarthy claimed the Times asked him if he had urged Trump to resign. The newspaper made no such claim in its story about the phone call.
Trump and McCarthy talk after audio broadcasts, lawmaker was ready to push Trump to quit
Other House Republicans hinted that they were unhappy with McCarthy about his statements on the phone call as well as his response when the tape was released. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), a staunch Trump ally, has sent several tweets criticizing McCarthy in recent days.
“I never told him to his face; I only said it behind his back”, Gaetz said in a tweet on Sunday mocking a video of McCarthy explaining his comments on Trump. Gaetz added the hashtag “#Leadership”.
But Gaetz also suggested the episode is unlikely to hurt McCarthy’s ambitions to become president if Republicans regain the House.
“I think that probably doesn’t really impact his position in the conference, because the alliance between the leaders and the Republicans in the conference is not an alliance based on truth or honesty. … The pact is all about fundraising,” Gaetz said in an interview Friday with conservative news channel Newsmax. “And Kevin McCarthy is the most elite fundraiser in Republican conference history.”
Another Trump ally, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), appeared with McCarthy at a U.S.-Mexico border event on Monday and thanked the California Republican for his leadership.
Biggs is among three GOP lawmakers — along with Reps. Paul A. Gosar of Arizona and Mo Brooks of Alabama — who right-wing activist Ali Alexander says helped him plan the ‘Stop the Steal” on January 6, 2021 in Washington that preceded the riot. A spokesperson for Biggs told the Washington Post last year that the congressman “is not aware of having heard from or met with Mr. Alexander at any time – let alone working with him to organize part of a planned demonstration”.
In the One America News interview, Biggs said that while McCarthy’s audio is “accurate and what he said was his true intentions and feelings – which I have no reason to doubt – I I have several problems”.
“My beef is triple,” Biggs said. “First, he was over there undermining the conference while we were over there fighting to defend the president. … Number two, he wasn’t upfront with the conference.
He added that the third and “most serious” issue was that McCarthy had suggested that Twitter should revoke the accounts of some Republican lawmakers, just as it did for Trump following the uprising.
“It’s problematic for me,” Biggs said.
While Biggs criticized McCarthy, he also suggested that House Republicans would rather not see the issue continue to distract from their efforts to win the House in November.
“What’s unfortunate for us now is that if he had just been honest and truthful with us back then, it wouldn’t be an issue today,” Biggs said. “And we don’t want that to be a problem, because we don’t want it to be a distraction, because we’re moving forward with tremendous momentum to reclaim the House.”