Gaetz Was Right & The MAGA Insurgency Must Keep Claiming Scalps

Gavin M. Wax
3 min readOct 26, 2023


Matt Gaetz has been vindicated, and if the hysterical, establishment conservatives who bashed him for ousting Kevin McCarthy had any humility, they would be lining up in apology. They were wrong, Gaetz was right. Republicans have a House Speaker whose record far more accurately resembles the conservative base and its principles. Speaker Mike Johnson won’t always be perfect, but thank God he’s not Kevin McCarthy.

Gaetz’s nimble navigating put Congressional RINOs in an unenviable position where they could not win. They saw this demonstrated when Rep. Tom Emmer of Minnesota, a candidate to the left of McCarthy, was forced to bow out after President Trump destroyed his ambitions with the click of a button in a Truth Social post.

RINOs did not want a conservative as Speaker because they did not want to give a victory to the America First base. After receiving thousands of calls and emails, getting hectored at public events, and being forced to endure the embarrassment of the spectacle, they were forced to capitulate.

It was a huge victory, and MAGA patriots also received the entertainment of watching them squirm for weeks. While rivaling any Jerry Springer program of its 1990s/2000s heyday, the circus also served a necessary function. It put strain on an already over-burned system, exacerbating chasms, fueling tensions, and lessening the likelihood of a return to the pre-Trump status quo. This is why so many milquetoast, establishment political pundits have been correct in hyperventilating over the consequences.

There has been more upset on Capitol Hill over the Speaker battle than the border invasion, the opioid crisis, inflation, the destruction of the American family, or any other, real crisis. Political figures having their massive egos checked is far worse an injury to these Byzantine elites than commoners having their lives destroyed. Decadent “elites” cannot handle being impeded even for a moment — the same way British royalty could not handle being challenged by the rabble-rousing colonists amidst our nation’s founding.

Gaetz and his comrades effectively attacked the privileged way of life enjoyed by D.C. insiders, shrewdly using the power at their disposal to put the brakes on the depraved system, fulfilling the demands of their mad-as-hell constituents for once. They have written the blueprint for how MAGA insurgents should conduct political affairs: reject business as usual, blow up the status quo, and impede the wretched process.

The America First movement buried the future of McCarthy, the last RINO “Young Gun” still in the fold after the political careers of former Congressmen Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor were similarly brought to an end.

McCarthy lied to the people. He thought he could speak out of both sides of his mouth, deliver just enough table scraps to sate his base, and be able to keep his gravy train on the tracks. In his opinion, McCarthy cut deals with enough people to ensure smooth sailing. Arrogance oozed from of every orifice. The former Speaker thought it didn’t matter if he added trillions of dollars in debt , allowed the IRS to target conservatives , and refused to release crucial January 6th video . The public would be lulled back to sleep, and Republicans would go along like they always have.

No more.

McCarthy learned the Republican Party is MAGA country, and the old rules shan’t apply. He is just the latest casualty in a protracted campaign that will rip open wounds to inject new blood.

Now look at the Republicans who have shown their true colors throughout this fiasco. Individuals groomed to be future leaders, such as Rep. Don Bacon of Nebraska and Rep. John James of Michigan. They are already looking at retirement plans. It will be messy public displays where these individuals are taken out of their comfort zones and forced to stray from their familiar talking points when exposed. This exposure will make it more likely for an America First replacement to upend them and take their seats.

The MAGA insurgency led by Gaetz has belligerently changed the debate but effectively pushed the populist, anti-establishment agenda to the forefront of politics. It may make some housebroken conservatives squeamish and uneasy, but so be it. Their time has come and gone. New leaders will rise from the ashes of a broken and dysfunctional Republican Party, which is the genesis of the America First movement that will save the Republic. And Gaetz will carry their banner, leading this unstoppable movement from the fringes into the corridors of power in Washington, D.C., and nationwide.

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Gavin M. Wax

Gavin M. Wax is a New York-based conservative political activist, commentator, columnist, operative, and strategist. You can follow him on Twitter at @GavinWax