Rogers says he regrets losing temper with Gaetz
Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) said he regrets losing his temper with the rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) on the House floor Friday night during a tense moment amid the protracted speaker’s tussle.
“[email protected] and I have a long and productive working relationship that I’m sure will continue. I’m sorry I lost my temper briefly on the house floor Friday night and appreciate Matt’s kind understanding,” Rogers tweeted Sunday.
The episode happened shortly after Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) lost the 14th ballot for Speaker due to opposition from six Republicans. Four members of the caucus voted for another candidate, and Gaetz and Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) voted “no,” leaving McCarthy one vote short of the Speaker’s nod.
Gaetz missed his initial opportunity to vote on the roll, forcing the clerk to return to him in the end. He was the last member to vote in that round, and his decision determined whether McCarthy would win the wave.
After Gaetz cast his actual vote, McCarthy walked up to his colleague from Florida and the two engaged in an intense conversation. After approximately a minute and a half of discussion, McCarthy left and Rogers approached Gaetz.
Video captured by C-SPAN shows Rogers confronting Gaetz. Rep. Richard Hudson (RN.C.) then came up behind Rogers and held him back, placing one hand on his shoulder and the other over his mouth.
The episode became one of the most stunning moments from the four-day race for Speaker, which spanned 15 ballots before McCarthy finally secured the donkey. Gaetz and the five incumbents all voted in attendance in the final round of voting, lowering the threshold McCarthy needed to win and putting him on the path to the gulf.
Gaetz on Sunday said he forgave Rogers for the tense moment and had no concerns about working together in the future. Rogers is slated to become chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, of which Gaetz is a member.
“Certainly in a high-drama moment of the night, people can have moments of frustration. But Mike Rogers and I have a productive six-year working relationship, we’re going to work together wonderfully going forward, and I don’t think there should be any retribution or retaliation just because he had an animated moment,” Gaetz said on Fox. News.
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“He has my forgiveness and is certainly someone who has done great things for our national defense and will continue to do those great things,” Gaetz added.
This news was updated at 11:24