Gaetz Ignores Party Requests and, Launches Campaign Against House Republican

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) campaigned alongside a primary opponent to Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-Texas) on Thursday, defying party leadership’s demands for GOP unity.

Gaetz was in Texas to attend an event with Brandon Herrera, a pro-gun social media star who forced Gonzales into a primary runoff earlier this month.

He did so against leadership’s requests to avoid nasty infighting. Gaetz went so far as to paraphrase an Axios story on these entreaties, focusing instead on Republican resistance to Ukraine aid.

“In other news — grassroots Republicans plead with House GOP leaders to stop sending money to Ukraine,” Gaetz posted on X, the site that was formerly known as Twitter.

The Florida Republican has already endorsed numerous other ultra-conservative candidates running against party leadership favorites, including an opponent of Rep. Mike Bost (R-Ill.), whose primary is on Tuesday.

Gaetz has long been a thorn in leadership’s side, spearheading efforts to depose former Speaker Kevin McCarthy.

The Texas Republican Party censured the more moderate Gonzales last year for his support for a bipartisan gun safety proposal, among other things.

The runoff between Gonzales and Herrera will take place on May 28. The primary winner will be the odds-on favorite in November.

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