Breitbart News Senior Editor-at-Large Joel B. Pollak pushed back Wednesday against arguments that former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) had to go, saying that Republicans had done something “monumentally stupid.”
Pollak appeared on AM 870 The ANSWER, with host Grant Stinchfield (co-host Jennifer Horn was out sick). Stinchfield backed the move to oust McCarthy — but gave Pollak a chance to state the case for the former Speaker.
“Republicans found a way, somehow, to fire the most popular member of Congress for doing his job,” Pollak said.
When Stinchfield appeared incredulous at that claim, Pollak cited recent polls — including a Rasmussen poll that showed McCarthy to be the most popular leader on Capitol Hill, with 42% approval against 41% disapproval.
Stinchfield challenged Pollak to cite any of McCarthy’s accomplishments. He replied by noting that McCarthy forced President Joe Biden to accept negotiations on the debt ceiling earlier this year, after Biden demanded an unconditional debt ceiling hike.
When Stinchfield noted that spending had continued to increase, Pollak noted that the Senate was still in the hands of Democrats, and McCarthy had done the best he could to cut some spending under the circumstances.
Sinchfield said that McCarthy had failed to move on impeaching the president, and attacked Republicans for bringing legal scholar Jonathan Turley to testify, instead of more explosive witnesses. Pollak noted that Turley was important — not just because impeachment inquiries have to start with constitutional foundations, but also because Turley opposed the inquiry until August, when he changed his mind, thanks to evidence that developed over time.
Pollak also pointed out that some of the “Gang of Eight” who voted to get rid of McCarthy, like Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), were not conservative. Buck — “the ultimate RINO” — opposed an impeachment inquiry into Biden, and supports the JCPA, a bailout for mainstream media corporations that would kill independent conservative media.
Stinchfield agreed with that point, noting that McCarthy had backed legislation to save AM radio, which Democrats want to eliminate because of conservative dominance there.
Asked if he would agree that McCarthy’s replacement would be better, Pollak replied with a one-word answer.
Stinchfield asked him to elaborate, and Pollak pointed out that any replacement would likely have to cooperate with Democrats — as rebel leader Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) already had done — and that the price of that cooperation would likely be agreeing to funding for Ukraine, which McCarthy had left out of the recent continuing resolution.
Stinchfield also noted that there were conservatives on both sides of the debate — Steve Bannon, Sebastian Gorka, and himself on one side, and Mark Levin and Pollak, among others, on the other, and that he respected their views.
Ultimately, Stinchfield agreed that McCarthy had been better than his predecessors. Pollak added that McCarthy was “not perfect, but the best that Republicans have had.”
“I will be happy to agree that he didn’t fulfill everything that he said he would do, but you can point to example after example where he got at least part of the way there, and he was trying, and I just can’t see the big issue that justifies throwing him out after nine months of success on the job.”
Stinchfield said the segment had been “one of our best,” and an example of civil but vociferous debate within the conservative movement on both sides of the issue.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new biography, Rhoda: ‘Comrade Kadalie, You Are Out of Order’. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.