Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) saw nothing wrong with a literal fight beginning to break out between two members of Congress just before a bitterly divided GOP finally chose a new Speaker of the House on Friday.
On an airing of Fox News Sunday, host Shannon Bream pointed to the moment that Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), a long-time Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) ally, had to be whisked away as he lunged at Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL). Gaetz, of course, had been leading the Never Kevin cabal of far-right, Freedom Caucus types determined to deny McCarthy the Gavel.
Bream asked the Ohio representative to explain how Americans can now trust the GOP to effectively govern in light of such violent drama.
“Sometimes democracy is messy,” Jordan, who has said he cannot recall how many times he spoke to Donald Trump on Jan. 6, 2021, responded. “But I would argue that’s exactly how the Founders intended it.”
“They wanted real debate and real input from all people, and then you get a decision,” he added. “Whether it’s one vote or 15 votes, Kevin McCarthy is still Speaker of the House. I have seen all kinds of games go into extra innings and overtime. That’s just how it works.”
Just hours later, Gaetz seemed to agree with his colleague—saying during an interview with Fox News that he had forgiven Rogers for the outburst and planned to work together with him in the future despite their differences.
“Mike Rogers and I have a six-year, productive, working relationship. We’re going to work together wonderfully going forward,” Gaetz said during an interview on Fox News. “I don’t think there should be any punishment or reprisal just because he had an animated moment.”
Rogers, responding to a tweet in which Gaetz reiterated the message, said: “I have a long and productive working relationship, that I am sure will continue. I regret that I briefly lost my temper on the House Floor Friday evening and appreciate Matt’s kind understanding.”
Virtually every outside observer has said the historic flood of 14 failed votes before he finally got the win points to McCarthy being hamstrung by rogue far-right party insurgents. But Jordan claimed his conference would have no issue rallying against Democrats and the Biden administration—especially its energy and infrastructure policies.
Jordan was also adamant that the party would be able to pass its House rules package on Monday. This despite a slim four-seat majority and new promises offered to McCarthy holdouts, including deeper budget cuts.
“I think we’ll get the 218 votes we need to pass the rules package,” Jordan said. “What this rules package is designed to do is to stop what we saw happen literally 15 days ago, when the Democrats passed a $1.7 trillion monstrosity of a bill.”
“We got a $32 trillion debt, everything has to be on the table,” Jordan added. “When you’ve got numbers like that... frankly, we better look at the money we send to Ukraine, as well.”