Sunday Four-Play: Matt Gaetz vows to shiv Kevin McCarthy, and AOC says she may help

Wait, so Congress actually managed to pass a continuing resolution to keep the government open for another 45 days? And here two of the Sunday shows had already booked Matt Gaetz. This should be fun.

Will Gaetz 1) complain that this is brutally unfair to hardworking American taxpayers like Donald Trump and his next-door neighbor Vladimir, erm, Peterson, 2) introduce the world to his next wife, whose ultrasound photo he recently favorited on OkCupid, 3) slurp Jonathan Karl up like a hunk of Fazoli’s linguine while pugnaciously humming “Flight of the Valkyries,” or 4) promise to take another go at ruining the lives of millions of Americans who depend on government paychecks?

Or maybe he’ll be grilled about the Republicans’ fake impeachment of President Biden. In case you missed it, they held a hearing on Thursday that proved Joe Biden unconditionally loves his son. Republicans also called a witness who admitted there was no basis for impeachment. In other words, it was the shittiest shitshow you’ll ever see, even if you survive past the heat death of the universe. But hey, this is a resilient bunch. They can restart their impeachment crusade at another time. Maybe they’ll launch seven separate impeachment weeks before they eventually get bored and forget any of this ever happened.

Also, Kristen Welker is taking some time away from the 24/7 grind of undermining Western democracy. She’ll have to both-sides Donald Trump’s backyard orphans vs. puppies fight club some other time. “Meet the Press” has been preempted by NBC’s Ryder Cup coverage.

RELATED: Sunday Four-Play: The elephant in the room plops down on 'Meet the Press'

And as the House Judiciary GOP knows, if you can’t make up impeachable crimes, at the very least you can blame Joe Biden for our nation’s increasingly concerning golf gap

Joe Biden's America.

— House Judiciary GOP 🇺🇸 (@JudiciaryGOP) September 29, 2023

Finally, will any of the shows mention that Donald Trump gave a speech on Friday that made Ozzy Osborne biting the head off a bat look like Demosthenes' Third Philippic?

Oh, yeah. It was bonkers, yo. Here’s just one excerpt of the team coverage from “The Weekly What in the Ever-Living Fuck Is This Now, Gladys?”

“All the currently dry canals will be brimming and used to irrigate everything, including your own homes and bathrooms and everything,” Trump promised drought-beleaguered Californians as trillions of Filet-O-Fish particles from past lunches circled his head in a state of superposition waiting to be observed and become a sandwich. “You’re going to be happy, and I’m going to get it done fast.”

When asked for clarification, a Trump campaign spokesperson said the former president’s comprehensive 10-point plan for irrigating your bathroom will be released in two weeks.

And now on to the (un)usual nonsense.


Speak of the devil! No, really. Please speak of the devil. Summoning Satan to feast on my steaming viscera as I claw my gobsmacked face off with my newly gargoylish Howard Hughes hands for the rest of eternity might be preferable to transcribing this clip.

Gaetz broke news on the Sunday shows this week, announcing that he plans to punish House Speaker Kevin McCarthy for working with Democrats to ensure that 1.5 million hardworking Americans don’t immediately lose their paychecks for no reason

ABC News:

Hard-line Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz plans a vote this week to try and remove Speaker Kevin McCarthy from his role as punishment for McCarthy orchestrating a bipartisan stopgap government funding bill to stave off a shutdown, Gaetz said Sunday.

Removing McCarthy would essentially halt all legislative business in the House until a replacement is picked. It remains unclear if Gaetz currently has more than a handful of votes for such a dramatic move. McCarthy has dismissed the risk of a vacate motion.

"Bring it," he has said.

On Sunday, Gaetz responded, "Kevin McCarthy's going to get his wish."

Here’s Matt talking with Jonathan Karl of ABC’s “This Week” about his plans to shut down the House because Kevin didn’t agree to shut down the government:

“I am relentless and I will continue pursue this objective,” GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz tells @JonKarl of his push to vacate Kevin McCarthy as House Speaker.

— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) October 1, 2023

KARL: “So you’re not accomplishing anything here.”

GAETZ: “That’s not true.”

KARL: “Well, you don’t have the votes to remove him.”

GAETZ: “Well, I—by the way, I don’t know until we have him, and by the way, I might not have him the first time, but I might have him before the 15th ballot. That’s the number of ballots Kevin McCarthy needed.”

KARL: “So are you going to do this every day like you suggested? Are you going to go through this process of voting over and over and over again?”

GAETZ: “I am relentless, and I will continue to pursue this objective. And if all the American people see is that it is a uniparty that governs them and that it is always the Biden-McCarthy-Jeffries government that makes dispositive decisions on spending, then I am seeding the fields of future primary contests to get better Republicans in Washington who will actually tackle these deficits and debts.”

First of all, Matt Gaetz is pretty much the last person I want to hear say “seeding the fields.” Coming from him it just sounds gross. I can’t put my finger on it—it just does. It’s not the phrase itself necessarily. It’s his association with it. It might sound marginally less gross coming from a farmer, of course—even if that farmer was Ed Gein

Secondly, accomplishing nothing is kind of the whole point of Republicans, isn’t it? Matt is determined to hold the line on deficits when a Democrat is in the White House so he can choke the life out of the economy and return Dear Leader to his gilded throne. If he has to create unprecedented chaos to do so, that’s just gravy. 

RELATED: Sunday Four-Play: Auntie Maxine Waters scorches GOP, and Matt Gaetz makes a startling admission


Speak of this other devil! House Speaker Kevin McCarthy appeared on “Face the Nation” with host Margaret Brennan to respond to Gaetz’s perduring and performative Trump-humping. Brennan asked Evil Opie what he thought of Gaetz’s shoving-nerds-into-gym-lockers style of governing, and McCarthy did his best to project a sense of calm.

McCarthy: Gaetz is more interested in securing TV interviews than doing something. He wanted to push us into a shutdown… only because he wants to take this motion. Bring it on, let's get over with it

— Acyn (@Acyn) October 1, 2023

BRENNAN: “There is a lot to get to with you. I want to start, though, on the news this morning from Congressman Matt Gaetz who says he is going to seek a motion to vacate. He’s going to try to oust you as speaker of the House.”

MCCARTHY: “That’s nothing new, he’s tried to do that from the moment I ran for office.”

BRENNAN: “Well, this time he says he’s going to keep going. May not get there before the 15th ballot, but it took 15 for Kevin McCarthy. He says he’s coming for you. Can you survive?”

MCCARTHY: “Yes, I’ll survive. This is personal with Matt. Matt voted against the most conservative ability to protect our border, secure our border. He’s more interested in securing TV interviews than doing something. He wanted to push us into a shutdown, even threatening his own district with all the military people there who would not be paid, only because he wants to take this motion. So be it, bring it on, let’s get over with it [sic], and let’s start governing. If he’s upset because he tried to push us in a shutdown and I made sure government didn’t shut down, then let’s have that fight.”

Oh, boy! This should be fun. I’m sure y’all remember January’s protracted House speaker vote. It was like watching two greased hippos trying to screw on an elevator. Well, now we get to watch two hippos trying to screw on an elevator in reverse


McCarthy is still trying to blame Democrats for this 100% Republican-manufactured crisis.

McCARTHY: I wasn't sure it was gonna pass. You know why? Because the Democrats tried to do everything they can not to let it pass. BRENNAN: Democrats were the ones who voted for this!

— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 1, 2023

BRENNAN: “Were you confident we wouldn’t shut down?”

MCCARTHY: “I was confident I could get something on the floor to make sure the option that we would not ...”

BRENNAN: “But you weren’t sure it was going to pass.”

MCCARTHY: “Well, I wasn’t sure it was going to pass. You want to know why? Because the Democrats tried to do everything they can not to let it pass.”

BRENNAN: “Democrats were the ones who voted for this in a larger number than Republicans to keep the continuing resolution alive.”

MCCARTHY: “Did you watch the floor yesterday?”

BRENNAN: “Oh, yes, 90 Republicans voted against it.”

And … scene.

Thanks, Speaker McCarthy, and good luck. You’ll need it because …


Gee willikers, Aunt Bee! Looks like Kevin isn’t going to get much help from Democrats! At least without having to give them something in return.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez joined Jake Tapper on CNN’s “State of the Union” and said she absolutely would vote to vacate the speaker’s chair. Because, you know, McCarthy really, really sucks.

AOC on CNN says she'd "absolutely" vote to oust McCarthy as speaker

— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 1, 2023

TAPPER: “So you just heard Congressman Matt Gaetz say he’s going to move to oust McCarthy as speaker this week. If a motion to vacate the chair comes to the floor, how would you vote?”

OCASIO-CORTEZ: “Well, my vote beginning this term for speaker of the House was for Hakeem Jeffries. And I do not intend on voting for a Republican speaker of the House, but I believe that it’s up to the Republican conference to determine their own leadership and deal with their own problems. But it’s not up to Democrats to save Republicans—from themselves, especially.”

TAPPER: “Do you think that there will be any Democrats that might vote to save McCarthy?”

OCASIO-CORTEZ: “I mean, I certainly don’t think that we would expect to see that unless there’s a real conversation between Republican and Democratic caucuses and Republican and Democratic leadership about what that would mean, but I don’t think we’d give up votes for free.”

TAPPER: “But would you vote to vacate? Would you vote to get rid of McCarthy as speaker?”

OCASIO-CORTEZ: “Would I cast that vote? Absolutely. I think Kevin McCarthy is a very weak speaker. He clearly has lost control of his caucus. He has brought the United States and millions of Americans to the brink waiting until the final hour to keep the government open, and even then only issuing a 45-day extension, so we’re going to be right back in this place in November. And, you know, I think that our main priority has to be the American people and we’re going to keep our governance in a cohesive and strong place, but unless Kevin McCarthy asks for a vote, again, I don’t think we give something away for free.”

McCarthy should have learned this universal maxim long ago: If you try to please everyone, you end up pleasing no one. And now everyone hates him. And he might lose his job. And likely go down as one of the worst and weakest House leaders in U.S. history. 

But hey, at least he got to be speaker! Much like Anne Boleyn got to be queen and Eva Braun eventually managed to wrangle a marriage proposal out of Hitler

RELATED: Sunday Four-Play: It's Chuck Todd's last day! And we're ridin' with Biden


GOP Rep. Nancy Mace appeared on “Sunday Morning Futures” with Maria Bartiromo, whose show is roughly the journalistic equivalent of drinking from a firehose of curdled Yoo-hoo.

But even Fox News journalists are starting to wonder WTF Republicans are trying to accomplish with their Biden impeachment push, and so Bartiromo must have felt empowered to ask a legitimate question for once.

Of course, no matter how many different ways Republicans try to answer the question at the heart of their efforts—i.e., what did President Biden actually do that’s even remotely impeachable?—they still whiff every time.

BARTIROMO: Have you been able to identify specific policy decisions Joe Biden made that he was paid for? NANCY MACE: I have not had the ability to research that

— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 1, 2023

BARTIROMO: “Have you been able to identify specific policy decisions that Joe Biden made that he was paid for?”

MACE: “I have not had the ability to research that. I’ve been looking more at the LLCs, the bank records, all of the lies that Joe Biden has told, and what evidence we have so far in meetings, dinners, appointments, White House records, etc., phone messages, text messages, emails, etc., connecting the dots with Joe Biden.”

Oh, look! More nothing! Wait, this is the same nothing we’ve already reported on. Let’s find a fresh angle on this old pile of nothing and reintroduce it as a new pile of nothing! But don't rush us! It took us more than two years to dig up all this nothing, and nothing doesn’t grow on trees. You’ll just have to be patient. Like Job, that nice man from the Bible who did nothing wrong but was relentlessly harassed by Satan anyway.

For some reason that Bible story seems relevant right now. Much like the one where Jesus cast a legion of demons out of Donald Trump and into a nearby herd of pigs. Or maybe it was the other way around. I forget. It’s been a while since I darkened the door of a church, to be completely honest with you.

But wait! There’s more!

That’s all for now. Have a great, productive, and shutdown-free week!

Check out Aldous J. Pennyfarthing’s four-volume Trump-trashing compendium, including the finale, Goodbye, Asshat: 101 Farewell Letters to Donald Trump, at this link. Or, if you prefer a test drive, you can download the epilogue to Goodbye, Asshat for the low, low price of FREE