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'I'll be candid': GOP lawmaker reveals what might have happened behind closed doors if House hadn't recessed after McCarthy ouster
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'I'll be candid': GOP lawmaker reveals what might have happened behind closed doors if House hadn't recessed after McCarthy ouster

Republican Rep. Garret Graves (La.) revealed Wednesday that House Republicans almost fought one another over Rep. Matt Gaetz's campaign to oust Kevin McCarthy from the House speakership.

After eight Republicans joined House Democrats to remove McCarthy, Gaetz criticized House Speaker Pro Tempore Patrick McHenry (R) for sending lawmakers on recess until next week.

"We should be here tomorrow, working to elect a new speaker, getting onto our appropriations bills and engaging in a negotiation with the Senate to get the government funded. But instead these people have got to go home and cry for a week. They've got to go do a week of hand-wringing and bed-wetting over the fact that Kevin McCarthy isn't speaker any more," Gaetz said Tuesday on Newsmax.

Taking days off to cool down and ease tensions is, according to Graves, necessary after what almost went down privately among House Republicans.

"I'll be candid," Graves told CNN anchor Jake Tapper. "If we had stayed together in the meeting last night, I think that you would have seen fists thrown, and I'm not being dramatic when I say that.

"There is a lot of raw emotions right now," he explained. "I think it was best to let folks go back home and decompress a little bit and then come back together."

Tapper pushes back on GOP Rep. who says Dems share blame for ousting McCarthywww.youtube.com

Since McCarthy's ouster, many Republican lawmakers have said that Gaetz should be punished, perhaps even voted out of the House Republican Conference.

Graves did not endorse banishing Gaetz but said there should be "some type of penalty or punishment for what he did."

"Let's be really clear, you had eight Republicans that came together yesterday with 208 Democrats," Graves said.

When lawmakers return for business next week, electing a new speaker will likely be the top agenda item. So far, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan have announced their campaigns for the speakership.

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Chris Enloe

Chris Enloe

Staff Writer

Chris Enloe is a staff writer for Blaze News
@chrisenloe →