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After Trump: Rep. Matt Gaetz Emerging As Possible MAGA 2.0 Leader
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Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz (FL-1) led the charge against Rep. Adam Schiff’s Star Chamber impeachment this week—literally. Gaetz and 25 other Republicans burst into an impeachment hearing in a secure Capitol Hill conference room on Wednesday [House Republicans Literally Storm the Impeachment Hearings, by Sam Brodey and Sam Stein, The Daily Beast, October 23, 2019]. The disruption publicized the Republicans’ demand to hold open hearings on President Trump’s alleged misconduct. The Main Stream Media and the political Establishment predictably melted down; Trump’s patriot base loved it. It proved Gaetz is a fighter of Trumpian instinct. He fights tech censorship, hits hard the race question, stands up for persecuted right-wingers, and backs a non-interventionist, America-First foreign policy. On immigration, he’s second only to staunch immigration patriots like Steve King and Mo Brooks. Gaetz is only 37, but he is joining Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton, Donald Trump Jr., Josh Hawley, Kris Kobach, Tucker Carlson and others as possible leaders of MAGA 2.0.

Little, if anything is not to like about Gaetz. Consider the anti-SCIF (“Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility”)blitzkrieg. The Republican Establishment has been notably impotent on impeachment. Not Gaetz. He seized the MSM’s attention and stood up for Trump, who wants and needs his party to fight impeachment hammer and tongs. Where most Republicans bailed on Trump, at least House Minority Whip Steve Scalise and many members of the House Freedom Caucus joined Gaetz’s charge.

The reaction from the MSM and anti-Trump Democrats was predictable. #ArrestMattGaetz trended on Twitter, and pundits spewed venom at the knucklehead Republicans. Plus, of course, the rally to Trump’s defense against Schiff’s kangaroo court was “racist” because it involved a bunch of white men [‘Horde of clueless angry white men’: Internet mocks Matt Gaetz for leading a raid on a secure impeachment hearing, by Matthew Chapman, Raw Story, October 23, 2019].

But Gaetz didn’t apologize for being white or protest that he has many black friends. Instead, he hit back at the Left’s anti-white identity politics in conversations with Hallie Jackson of MSNBC and Fox’s Tucker Carlson.

And that wasn’t the first time Gaetz returned fire at the Left over anti-white rhetoric. At a September hearing on police reform, the Florida lawmaker grilled Al Sharpton [Rep. Gaetz clashes with Al Sharpton at House hearing on police brutality, by Marisa Schultz, New York Post, September 19, 2019]. Gaetz demanded answers on Sharpton’s anti-white comments and activities that include such notorious moments as the Tawana Brawley hoax and this invitation to New York’s Jewish community: “If the Jews want to get it on, tell them to pin their yarmulkes back and come over to my house” [Newsweek Whitewashes Al Sharpton, by Larry Elder, Orange County Register, August 10, 2010].

Outraged Democrats claimed the Republican was auditioning for Fox News. Gaetz didn’t flinch.

As a Florida state representative, Gaetz vouched for the necessity of “stand your ground” laws after George Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin in self-defense. “It would be reactionary and dangerous to make Floridians less safe to pacify uninformed protesters,” he said in 2013 [Matt Gaetz, Chair Of Florida ‘Stand Your Ground’ Hearings: ‘I Don’t Support Changing One Damn Comma’, HuffPost, August 8, 2013]. (Zimmerman’s successful defense did not rely on “stand your ground” laws, and he could not have fled if he wanted to—Martin pinned him to the ground).

Gaetz also stands up for those who come under media fire for false accusations of “white nationalism.” In April, Gaetz hired Darren Beattie, the former White House speechwriter fired for the grave offense of speaking at Paul Gottfried’s H.L. Mencken Club conference also addressed by founder Peter Brimelow. Gaetz caught flak, but stood by Beattie [Rep. Matt Gaetz hires ex-White House aide ousted for white nationalist ties, by Sarah Ferris, Politico, April 19, 2019].

The congressman also stood up for right-wing activist Charles Johnson. Johnson attended the 2018 State of the Union as Gaetz’s guest, which invited the usual MSM flash mob. Johnson, we heard, was a white supremacist and Holocaust denier. But instead of doing the typical cuck and duck, Gaetz defended his guest and refuted the false accusations [Republican congressman defends notorious Holocaust denier he invited to SOTU, by Luke Barnes, ThinkProgress, February 1, 2018].

If all that’s not enough, Gaetz is one of the main Republicans fighting tech censorship. He supports Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley’s bill that targets Big Tech’s privileges over its censorship and bias. “I’m a conservative. I don’t want Washington running my life, but I sure as hell don’t want Silicon Valley running my life,” he explained [The Fight Over Section 230—and the Internet as We Know It, by Matt Laso, Wired, August 13, 2019].

In 2018, Gaetz grilled Big Tech reps about their companies’ violations and even dared mention American Renaissance founder Jared Taylor, banned from Twitter along with his webzine in 2017. Gaetz noted that such selective censorship undermines the tech giants’ absurdly disingenuous claim that they aren’t publishers making editorial decisions. (Alas, the Florida congressman did, apparently, feel compelled to triangulate and smear the honorable and erudite Taylor as a “horrible human being” [Social Media Filtering Practices Judiciary Hearing, Congressman Matt Gaetz, YouTube, July 17, 2018]).

Gaetz is no neoconservative on foreign policy or immigration. In May, he outlined a staunchly America First foreign policy and how America should focus on securing our own borders instead of Afghanistan’s [Is Matt Gaetz the future of Trump foreign policy?, by Curt Mills, Spectator USA, June 12, 2019]. A near-perfect immigration patriot, he has an A+ rating from NumbersUSA. He ran for Congress in 2016 on a Trumpian message that warned of the dangers of illegal immigration and Islamic terrorism [Matt Gaetz runs for U.S. Congress, blasts ‘illegal immigrants’ and ‘Muslim terrorists’, by Dara Kam, News Service of Florida, March 21, 2016]. He supports Trump on building the wall and aggressively enforcing immigration law. He is a co-sponsor of the RAISE Act, which would halve legal immigration and reform our system to put America first.

And, again, Gaetz is not afraid to defend speech that sends the anti-Trump Left and its MSM auxiliary into a frothing rage. He defended Trump’s “s**thole” comments by stating that Haiti is, in fact, a deplorable place [GOP Lawmaker Matt Gaetz Slams Haiti: ‘Sheet Metal And Garbage’ Everywhere You Look, by Ed Mazza, HuffPost, January 16, 2018]. In another volley at Leftist GroupThink, he noted illegal immigrant violence is a more serious problem than gun violence. “The greatest driver of violence—in the circumstances that I indicated—was not the firearm. It’s the fact that we have an immigration system that allows people to come here violently,” he said at a February hearing on gun policy [Parkland dad says he interrupted GOP rep at gun hearing to ‘let the nation know he’s wrong,’ by Veronica Stracqualursi, CNN, February 7, 2019].

One blemish: Gaetz voted for the infamous Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act in July, which would scrap country caps on work visas and give Indians at least 75 percent of all employment-based visas, meaning corporate America could and would hire more Indians (who clearly gravitate to the Left) to replace high-skilled Americans. Fifty-seven House Republicans voted against the bill, including immigration patriots Steve King and Mo Brooks.

Gaetz’s Yes vote diminishes his immigration patriot status, but doesn’t eradicate it. Other immigration patriots, such as Senators Tom Cotton and David Perdue, also support the Indian green card giveaway. Unquestionably, donor pressure was intense, and the bill does not increase the overall inflow, so they may well have reasoned it’s just a technical adjustment. Gaetz’s vote unfortunate, and indicates room for improvement. But his solid record on everything else demonstrates that he’s educable.

A strong candidate for higher office, Gaetz has a bright future even if open spots higher up the Sunshine State’s political food chain are few and far between. GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis is up for re-election in 2022. Gaetz is an ally to the Trumpist governor and likely won’t attempt a primary. But Sen. Marco Rubio must defend his seat in 2022. If he betrays Trump, Gaetz is strongly positioned to primary him. Some in Trump world see Gaetz as a future House Speaker, a reasonable view considering his leadership this week. A second-term Trump would want and need a stronger speaker than Kevin McCarthy if Republicans retake the House.

Or maybe Gaetz could run as Trump’s successor in 2024. Trump proved you needn’t be a senator or a governor to win the nomination. Connecting with the Historic American Nation is key. Gaetz has four years to build a national following and name recognition.

My verdict: Keep an eye on him. Trump said Gaetz is “going places” for a reason: He’s a leader in the new, Trumpian Republican Party.

Especially if Trump wins a second term, expect Gaetz’s fortunes to rise.

Washington Watcher II [Email him] is an anonymous DC insider.

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
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  1. Leon says:

    Trump and his cohorts do not support America First they support Israel First especially Ted Cruz.

    • Agree: RadicalCenter
  2. [Global warming comments should be confined to Global Warming threads.]

  3. Hail says: • Website

    Thank you for this article, Washington Watcher II.

    I’d like to add the following background/bio information I’ve found on Gaetz, which may be of interest and/or use, as Matt Gaetz’ star continues to rise:


    MATT GAETZLife Profile in Brief.


    – born May 1982 in Florida; raised in Niceville, Florida, in the Florida Panhandle near his mother’s hometown of Fort Walton Beach;

    – On Matt Gaetz’ family/ancestral origins — Father’s side — All of Matt Gaetz’ father’s grandparents were born in the Upper Midwest (mainly Minnesota) between the 1870s and early 1890s, and all were in the Dakotas by the early 20th century (this according to information available at genealogical website; grandparents’ surnames at birth: Gaetz, Andrews, Knutson, Upsahl; Thus Matt Gaetz himself is of (at least) 1/4th Scandinavian-Lutheran ancestry; Matt’s father Don Gates (b.1948) is culturally tied to the Scandinavian-Lutheran tradition of the Upper Midwest through upbringing in the Lutheran church (his Florida State Senate profile used in the 2010s also lists “Religious Affiliation: Lutheran”) and is also a graduate of Concordia College, a Lutheran college in Minnesota; Don Gaetz then earned an MPA Troy University in Alabama before moving a bit further south, to the Florida panhandle, in 1978, where he has lived out his life;

    – On Matt Gaetz’ family/ancestral origins — Mother’s side — Don Gaetz must have met his future wife Victoria (Vicky) Quertermous (b.1951?) of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, sometime in the 1970s and no later than 1980, possibly in Alabama where he was studying for an MPA, but more likely (?) in Florida after he arrived to start a job in 1978 (note: in the scenario whereby they met in Alabama, it means Don Gaetz moved his entire life to be near his wife’s hometown in Florida); in any case, Don and Vicky married in 1981; Vicky is possibly a descendant of Florida pioneer William Stanton Quertermous (1829-1887; of Kentucky by way of Arkansas, buried in Florida, gets mention in some local history literature in Florida as an early settler); from pictures it appears that Matt Gaetz’ mother is a typical North Florida white person; Methodist.

    Ethnocultural origin, summary: The overall picture here, taking into account what we know of his ancestry on both sides, is that Matt Gaetz is definitely ‘Core American,’ by which I mean Middle America; Matt Gaetz has a high likelihood of scoring very high NW European on a 23andMe genetic test, perhaps even ~100%;

    1994: Don Gaetz, Matt’s father, then a successful local businessman, is elected to the Okaloosa County [Florida] School Board (several consecutive terms); later elected Superintendent of Schools (2000, 2004);

    circa late 1990s: Matt Gaetz, previously raised in both his father’s (Lutheran) and mother’s (Methodist) churches, has a ‘born again’ experience at a Baptist church, presumably in Florida (“I was saved in a Baptist Church during my teenage years”); has been an active member of First Baptist Church in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, for years;

    2000?: Graduates from Niceville High School (the town was 87% White, <5% Black, 4% Hispanic, 3% Asian, in 2000 [census figures]);

    2003: Earns a Bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies, Florida State Univ. [Tallahassee, northern Florida];

    2006: Don Gaetz, Matt’s father, locally successful, is elected to the Florida State Senate as a conservative, serving several terms through 2016 (term limit);

    2007: Matt earns a JD, College of William & Mary [Virginia]; after graduating, he returns to Fort Walton Beach, Florida, and works at a law firm until his break comes in spring 2010;

    April 2010: Matt is elected to the Florida State House in a special election (following the sudden resignation of an incumbent); Matt’s ability to take this State House seat, just before turning 28, is almost certainly because his father was locally very popular — name recognition and the like; he was reelected to the State House in 2012 and 2014;

    2015 to Feb. 2016: Matt Gaetz’ sister (b.1985) is employed by the Jeb Bush campaign as head of digital content (Jeb drops out in Feb. 2016 following his humiliation by Trump);

    March 2016: US House Rep. Jeff Miller, of Florida’s 1st District, which is Gaetz’ home district, announces his retirement, not to seek re-election in Nov. 2016; Matt Gaetz announces his candidacy for this Safe R seat, and wins the primary against a crowded field — Gaetz takes 36-22-21 against two principal opponents, Greg Evers and Cris Dosev; several other candidates split a further 21% of the vote; this modest victory by Matt Gaetz is probably again thanks to name recognition via his popular-in-local-politics father, giving Matt Gaetz a local base in Okaloosa County (pop.: 200,000, 25%+ of the district) that other contendors lacked;

    Nov. 2016: Elected to US House, Florida 1st District (Florida Panhandle) [77% White, 12% Black, 6% Hispanic, 3% Asian]; note also that Florida’s 1st District was formerly represented by Joe Scarborough (elected four times beginning in 1994), who from 2003 to present has been of MSNBC and 2015 to present a major Trump critic;

    Nov. 2018: Reelected to his US House seat (Florida-1), by a 67-33 margin. (Primary challenged again in Aug. 2018, but handily won the primary this time, 65-30-5.)

    – By 2019: Emerges as a MAGA flag-carrier and media-savvy spokesman (often appearing on Fox News, I believe), and Trump loyalist (making the news as such in Oct. — which inspired this article by Washington Watcher II), and as of late 2019 he may among the closest thing the US Congress has to a young figure of the Nationalist-Right, far preferable to Dan ‘Eye Patch’ Crenshaw (b.1984) of Texas, who was once billed as such, but who has emerged as a kind of watered-down, neo-Neocon;

    2020: Matt Gaetz faces primary in Florida-1 House seat (primary-challenge registration deadline: June 12; primary voting day: Aug. 18) and re-election (Nov.); very likely to win primary and if he does, certain to win general.

    Summer 2022 (as suggested by Washington Watcher II): Matt Gaetz may stage a primary challenge to Marco Rubio for US Senate, which, if successful and Gaetz takes the seat, would be a great win for us.

    – The 2024 presidential cycle: We’ll see…

  4. Hail says: • Website

    Gaetz is only 37, but he is joining Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton, Donald Trump Jr., Josh Hawley, Kris Kobach, Tucker Carlson and others as possible leaders of MAGA 2.0.

    This is James Kirkpatrick’s list in his July 2019 VDare article, “The Heirs of MAGA—Who Will Lead Historic American Nation After Trump?

    In a comment to that essay (comment-17), I posted all the above’s “immigration grades” as found at NumbersUSA. In checking the immigration grades, I found a few more names to suggest (those with scores closest to A+), and posted those as well. All of these additional personalities I found wanting, except one: Matt Gaetz.

    The last words of that comment are:

    Matt Gaetz For President?

    That was July 2019.

    I see Washington Watcher II has written (this article), in Oct. 2019, as follows:

    maybe Gaetz could run as Trump’s successor in 2024.

  5. Anonymous[283] • Disclaimer says:

    more kosher personalities from kosher and well-connected neoliberals at VDARE

    Tell me when he mentions something about the U.S.S Liberty, the false-flag attacks of 9/11 and shutting the military bases strewn across the world.

    VDARE is neoliberal they have never proposed anything like the eudaimonic economics. unrestrained movement of capital and the elite. Brimelow and Derbyshire aren’t even Americans, how many of these people are in cross-national marriages, even worse cross-racial marriages. These are wealthy well-traveled rootless cosmopolitans who have learned ethnocentrism from Jewish elites. Of course they asked why are Jews allowed ethnic chauvinism but others aren’t. However they never bothered to question whether they are any closer to the gentile masses than the Jewish elites. And they are not. They are well traveled elites far separated from the people who would actually stand to benefit from actual patriotism rather than this sad kosher stew racial animus tinged with a victim complex about how everything is going to end unless America wakes up overthrows conservatism inc and votes for another kosher candidate promoted by out of touch elites.

    What did Trump and his two republican chambers of congress do? Tax cuts, tax cuts and tax cuts. Immigration? Nuclear weapons treaty with Russia? Infrastructure? Educational affirmative action reform? Student debt reform?

    And of course moving the emnbassy to Jerusalem and declaring the Golan to be Israel, and maybe soon the west bank, plus lets not forget the pardon to the Kosher meatpacker who stole millions and hired illegal immigrant child labor.

    I can forgive a bunch of non-elite patriots placing their best hopes on the shitty candidates preselected for them and the grifters that populate politics, but I cannot forgive well connected elites promoting and selecting shitty candidates and setting the tone of politics to be dysfunctional grievance recitation instead of actually getting things done, all the while appropriating the term patriot. Give me a break.

    Bunch of worthless pied pipers.

    • Replies: @Oldtradesman
  6. Liza says:

    Tell me when he mentions something about the U.S.S Liberty, the false-flag attacks of 9/11 and shutting the military bases strewn across the world.

    Maybe if he did, everyone will suspect that he is just like Trump with his endless wonderful – and unkept -promises. If a prez is going to do something controversial, he will do it regardless of whether or not that was why he was elected. Best not to say anything till you take the oath of office.

    I am uneasy about that born-again business, mind you.

    • Disagree: TTSSYF
  7. @Anonymous

    What you write is true.

    It’s all about “keeping hope (donor buck$) alive (rolling in).” As the perimeter shrinks the gutless, rabbit white Right will continue to lower its expectations and strive ever harder to find “reasons” to back another conservative liberal in the Republican Party.

    “Politics is the art of the possible,” say our Blightwing intellekshuals – forgetting that their predecessors have used this phrase to justify Blightist cowardice, indolence, and incompetence for the past 55 years.

    The people you mention have an exit plan. Should life in FUSA get spicy in the 2020s, they will avail themselves of it.

    • Replies: @Hail
  8. Hail says: • Website

    the gutless, rabbit white Right

    VDare is not the “gutless, rabbit white Right” (if that is what you are implying). I would call VDare “moderate ethnonationalist” (or soft-ethnonationalist). You’re describing the “Beltway Right” and “Conservatism Inc.” and their many low-information followers — VDare has consistently attacked Conservatism Inc. from the right, year after year, for twenty years or more (founded 2000; but VDare’s origins really date to the time that then-mainstream journalist Peter Brimelow came out against mass immigration in the early 1990s).

    continue to lower its expectations and strive ever harder to find “reasons” to back another conservative liberal in the Republican Party

    I agree this is always a risk, especially with people who are fans of ‘following’ politics like some follows sports teams. It’s understandable but in itself not decisive. Control of the culture is decisive.

  9. Hail says: • Website

    Influential cartoonist-turned-political-commentator Scott Adams today called Matt Gaetz “future president Matt Gaetz.”

  10. Hail says: • Website

    Rep. Matt Gaetz [Verified]
    Oct. 29, 2019

    Donald Trump is innocent. The deep state is guilty.


    On Oct. 27, Matt Gaetz was one of the guests invited by President Trump to watch the World Series in his box at Nationals Park, Washington DC.

  11. Sunshine says:

    Gaetz is ok. His father, Don Gaetz, was pretty corrupt. One of our local radio shows (Burnie Thompson) led a crusade against him, which got him fired from his show in Panama City, and he was blacklisted for a while. He did get a show in Pensacola but it isn’t quite the same. He had to toe the line (and I think he’s a pretty big drinker and seems like a striver although he is very nice, met him twice) to get back on. I don’t listen to his show now, it’s on at an awkward time, but when I have heard it a few times, it’s much more tame.

    I will say that I was impressed with Matt Gaetz’s theatrics regarding the Trump impeachment. At least he’s doing SOMETHING. Even if it’s all BS. His district is SUPER Republican and he’ll get re elected. NW FL is definitely not going to vote him out so he can do this type of thing. The entire political system is screwed up. I’ll just try to find a ray of sunshine here.

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