- A leaked audio captured House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s private comments about his GOP colleagues during the Capitol riot.
- NYT reporters Alexander Burns and Jonathan Martin obtained the audio while reporting for an upcoming book.
- During a call, McCarthy asked if a GOP lawmaker could be banned from Twitter over a now-deleted tweet about the Jan. 6 attack.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has wondered aloud whether some GOP lawmakers might be banned from social media for controversial posts like former President Donald Trump, according to a New York Times report.
In audio recordings obtained by Times reporters Alexander Burns and Jonathan Martin, the House Minority Leader was heard expressing concern over comments by his GOP colleagues inciting violence in the wake of the riot in Capitol.
McCarthy reportedly named some of the aforementioned lawmakers, including GOP Reps. Matt Gaetz and Mo Brooks. (Brooks gave a speech at a rally ahead of the Capitol siege.)
During a call with Representative Steve Scalise of Louisiana and other GOP leaders, McCarthy discussed other GOP lawmakers who had made remarks regarding the Capitol seat, including Representatives Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Louie Gohmert of Texas and Barry Moore of Alabama, according to The Times.
At one point during the call, a now-deleted tweet from Moore was read, in which the Alabama lawmaker commented on the shooting death of pro-Trump rioter Ashli Babbitt.
“I understand (sic) that it was a black policeman who shot the white veteran,” he said. tweeted the weekend following the January 6 attack. “You know that doesn’t fit the narrative.”
After the comment was read on the call, McCarthy replied, “Can’t they take down their Twitter accounts too?” alluding to Trump’s banning of the social media platform in early January 2021.
McCarthy’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider.
The release of this audio follows the reporting of a slew of other statements he allegedly made behind closed doors, including one in which he privately accused Trump of the Capitol riot to his colleagues, according to a leaked audio. previously obtained by The Times. Before the tapes aired, the House GOP leader denied making the statements.
“I’m sick of this guy,” McCarthy said of Trump in a phone call with House Republicans, according to reporters Burns and Martin. “What he did is unacceptable. Nobody can defend him, and nobody should defend him.”
Democrats ripped McCarthy for defending Trump publicly and denouncing him privately, calling McCarthy “incapable, spineless” and a “liar.”