Matt Gaetz has told his supporters that they have an ‘obligation’ to use their Second Amendment rights against Silicon Valley firms, in retaliation for their blocking of conservatives like Donald Trump.
The Florida congressman was in Georgia on Thursday night, speaking alongside Marjorie Taylor Greene, who represents the district. The pair of controversy-courting Republicans are currently in the midst of an ‘America First’ tour to drum up support for their campaigns.
Greene entertained her constituents in Dalton, 100 miles north of Atlanta, with her impressions of Mexican cartel members, who she said were delighted by the surge in migrant arrivals under President Joe Biden.
‘The cartels love the Democrats,’ said Greene.
‘Yeah, they’re down there like this: ‘We’re makin’ a lotta money off of Biden. Joe Biden!’
‘That’s my really bad Mexican accent.’
Marjorie Taylor Greene was in her constituency on Thursday night, bringing her House colleague Matt Gaetz to Dalton, Georgia, around 100 miles north of Atlanta. The two passionately pro-Trump Republicans are in the midst of an ‘America First’ fundraising tour, that has seen them speak to crowds across the U.S. about election fraud and cancel culture
Taylor Greene, 47, amused her constituents with her impressions of a Mexican cartel leader, putting on an accent to claim that the cartel members love Joe Biden, because he is soft on immigration and gives drug traffickers free rein at the border
It was Gaetz, however, who provoked the most anger with his calls for an armed assault on tech firms.
He accused them of silencing conservatives like Trump, who has been banned since the beginning of this year for inciting the January 6 riot.
‘The internet’s hall monitors out in Silicon Valley, they think they can suppress us, discourage us.
‘Maybe if you are just a little less patriotic. Maybe if you just conform to their way of thinking a little more, you’ll be allowed to participate in the digital world.
‘But you know what, Silicon Valley can’t cancel this movement, or this rally, or this congressman.
‘We have a Second Amendment in this country, and I think we have an obligation to use it.’
Gaetz, 39, told the crowd in Georgia that they had an ‘obligation’ to use their Second Amendment rights on Silicon Valley firms that silenced conservatives. He was referring to the decision back in January by major social media platforms, including Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, to ban Donald Trump, accusing him of causing unrest with his inflammatory comments about the January 6 Capitol riot
Gaetz’s comments were immediately condemned by his fellow Republican representative, Adam Kinzinger, for Illinois.
Kinzinger, who is vocal in his condemnation of the pro-Trump wing of the party, tweeting in response to the clip: ‘This is not speech protected by the first amendment. This is beyond yelling fire in a theater.’
Gaetz, 39, also issued a thinly-veiled threat about overthrowing the government.
‘The Second Amendment – this is a little history lesson for all the fake news media,’ he said.
‘The Second Amendment is not about, it’s not about hunting, it’s not about recreation, it’s not about sports.
‘The Second Amendment is about maintaining, within the citizenry, the ability to maintain an armed rebellion against the government if that becomes necessary.
‘I hope it never does, but it sure is important to recognize the founding principles of this nation, and to make sure that they are fully understood.’
Gaetz, a congressman for Florida, is using his speeches on the America First tour to discuss popular conservative themes – cancel culture, gun rights, election fraud and the U.S.-Mexico border. He is also defending himself against allegations he was involved in the sex trafficking of a minor
Both Gaetz and Greene are hoping to distract from their own controversies.
Gaetz is currently under investigation for the sex trafficking of a minor. His ex-girlfriend is cooperating with federal prosecutors, and his former ‘wingman’, Joel Greenberg, has taken a plea deal and implicated Gaetz in his sexual crimes.
Gaetz has not been charged, and insists that he is relaxed about anything Greenberg may say, pointing out that Greenberg has admitted to lying and smearing people.
Greene has caused outrage with her likening of policies insisting on wearing face masks in Congress to the Holocaust.
On Thursday night she was unrepentant, however, telling her constituents: ‘I won’t be wearing my mask anymore on the House floor.’
Gaetz earlier said he is open to running for president if Donald Trump does not.
‘I support Donald Trump for president. I’ve directly encouraged him to run and he gives me every indication he will,’ Gaetz told The New York Post via text.
‘If Trump doesn’t run, I’m sure I could defeat whatever remains of Joe Biden by 2024.’
But Gaetz will have to come out unscathed from any claims made by Greenberg, a former Florida tax collector who pleaded guilty to six counts of fraud and sexual offenses earlier this month.
Rep. Matt Gaetz told The New York Post that he’s open to running for president – as long as former President Donald Trump doesn’t try again for a second term
Former President Donald Trump, photographed outside of Trump Tower earlier this week, has not yet said if he’ll run for president in 2024, though hinted that he would
A sketch of Joel Greenberg (right), described as a ‘wingman’ to Rep. Matt Gaetz, and Greenberg’s attorney Fritz Scheller (left) in federal court in Orlando on May 17
Greenberg told investigators that the Florida Republican and at least two other men had sexual contact with a 17-year-old girl.
Gaetz has denied those claims.
‘I’m not too worried about Joel Greenberg,’ Gaetz told Newsmax last week.
‘Joel Greenberg is literally sitting in jail right now because he originally accused someone who was innocent of having had a relationship with a minor. That wasn’t true, it was just a false thing that Joel Greenberg had said and that’s landed him in quite a bit of trouble.’
Gaetz told The Post he hasn’t formed an exploratory committee for a 2024 White House bid.
Another source told The Post that Gaetz could run as an assist to another prominent Florida man – the state’s Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Gaetz could play attack dog for DeSantis and take out other members of the party if there’s a crowded Republican primary, like New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie did for Trump, when he went after Florida Sen. Marco Rubio at a 2016 New Hampshire debate.
Trump has not officially announced that he’ll run for president again in 2024, though has hinted that he would.