Matt Gaetz had one of his former staffers speak publicly today about having been interviewed by the FBI. This was apparent attempt on Gaetz’s part at blowing up the criminal probe into his alleged sexual relationship with an underage girl. Gaetz isn’t nearly smart enough to figure out how to pull this off, and if anything, he’s more likely to get himself charged with obstruction.
But it’s a reminder that when someone is being criminally investigated by the Department of Justice on ultra-serious charges, that person can’t be in a position to sabotage the investigation. Matt Gaetz isn’t just a sitting member of Congress, he sits on a committee that has oversight into the FBI probe into him.
Congresman Ted Lieu explained why this needs to immediately end: “I reiterate again that it’s a conflict of interest for a Member of Congress to sit on the congressional committee that has oversight over the FBI at the same time the FBI is actively investigating him. GOP Leader must remove Rep Gaetz from House Judiciary Committee immediately.”
There is no indication that House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy is willing to make this kind of move against Matt Gaetz at this time. And with no clear timeframe for potential indictments against Gaetz, the House Democrats may end up needing to hold a vote to have Gaetz removed from committees.
The Democrats already did this to Marjorie Taylor Greene, even though she’s not a member of their party, so there is precedent. If Gaetz ends up being cleared, he can be reinstated to committees. And if he ends up indicted, he’ll have far bigger problems than committee assignments. So yeah, the House Democrats may once again need to clean up the House Republicans’ mess.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report