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Progressive Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tore into House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy on Sunday, branding the lawmaker a ‘liar and a traitor’ after explosive leaked audio revealed he wanted Donald Trump to resign after the Capitol riot.
McCarthy has been under fire from both sides of the aisle since a recently-revealed private phone call days after the January 6th insurrection showed the true depth of his fury at the ex-president — only for him to fly to Florida for an audience with Trump in a show of support just days later.
‘Kevin McCarthy is a liar and a traitor. This is outrageous,’ Warren said on CNN‘s State of the Union.
‘And that is really the illness that pervades the Republican leadership right now. Because they say one thing to the American public, and they say something else in private.’
She accused McCarthy of focusing more on Trump’s baseless claims the 2020 election was rigged rather than moving the country ‘forward.’
‘They understand it is wrong what happened — an attempt to overthrow our government,’ Warren said.
‘And that the Republicans instead want to continue to figure out how to make 2020 election different instead of spending their energy on how it is we go forward…in order to make this country work better.’
She added, ‘Shame on Kevin McCarthy.’
It comes after the California Republican told other GOP leaders that he would ask Trump to resign and accused the ex-president of ‘inciting people’ to go to the Capitol that day.
Progressive Democrat Senator Elizabeth Warren said McCarthy should feel ‘shame’ over the explosive leaked audio
Other Democrats were quick to pile on McCarthy as well, with Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) calling him a ‘liar’ on Twitter late last week.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said on April 22, ‘Authoritarians don’t come to power alone. They come to power on the backs of men like Kevin McCarthy.’
GOP Senator Roy Blunt also weighed in on Sunday, telling NBC News he was ‘surprised’ McCarthy even mentioned resignation to Trump.
‘He’s been close to Trump. Frankly, when I first heard this, I thought, anybody who’d been as close to President Trump as Kevin McCarthy was would know that the last thing Donald Trump was gonna do is either resign or quit,’ Blunt said.
‘There was no way that was gonna happen. I was frankly so surprised that Kevin would even suggest that it might be a realistic suggestion to make to President Trump.’
GOP Senator Roy Blunt was ‘surprised’ that McCarthy would even suggest asking Trump to resign, claiming it was the ‘last thing’ the ex-president would do
Most Republicans, meanwhile, have for held back their reactions until they hear from Trump — who reportedly is not mad at the GOP leader.
McCarthy phoned the former president following the release of stunning tapes that captured internal GOP leadership discussions after the Capitol riot, according to the Washington Post.
It might be expected that Trump would be fuming at the fellow Republican, whom he once called ‘My Kevin,’ after hearing McCarthy’s tough talk with fellow House members.
That includes McCarthy telling fellow lawmakers ‘What he did is unacceptable. Nobody can defend that, and nobody should defend it,’ in a January 10, 2021 call.
But a source confirmed to DailyMail.com that Trump isn’t sore at McCarthy.
In fact, Trump was ‘glad the Republican leader didn’t follow through, which Trump saw as a sign of his continued grip on the Republican Party,’ according to the Post, which cited three anonymous sources.
Former President Donald Trump isn’t upset at leaked tapes that reveal House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy
McCarthy has longtime hopes of being elected speaker – a task that would become herculean with outright opposition from Trump, whose grip on the party is so strong that his own name has even been floated for the post (the speaker does not have to be a sitting House member under House rules).
The two men spoke before CNN aired still more recorded audio of McCarthy, including the House leader saying Trump bore ‘some responsibility’ for Jan. 6.
‘I know this is not fun. I know this is not great. I know this is very tough, but what I want to do, especially through here is, I don’t want to rush things. Want everybody to have all the information needed. I’ve had it with this guy. What he did is unacceptable. Nobody can defend that, and nobody should defend it,’ McCarthy said on a phone call with a small group of House Republicans on January 10th, 2021.
McCarthy was also recorded on a Jan. 11, 2021 call with the larger GOP Conference, where he again gave Trump public blame.
‘Let me be very clear to all of you, and I am very clear to the president. He bears responsibilities for his words and actions, no IFS, ands, or buts. I asked him personally today, does he hold responsibility for what happened? Does he feel bad about what happened? He told me he does have some responsibility for what happened. And he needed to acknowledge that,’ he said.
THE RECEIPTS: On Thursday night’s Rachel Maddow Show, the MSNBC host played a clip of a conversation between House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Rep. Liz Cheney. In it, McCarthy says what was reported in a forthcoming book by New York Times reporters, which he denied saying earlier Thursday
Rep. Liz Cheney denies she leaked audio of a call to New York Times reporters in which House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy says he’ll pressure former President Donald Trump to resign in the aftermath of the January 6 Capitol attack
The recordings were revealed by New York Times reporters Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns, who are promoting their new book, This Will Not Pass.
Trump has not publicly responded to the leaks.
And in the many months after Jan. 6th, he has not made any kind of public statement of responsibility for what transpired.
Instead, Trump has railed against an election he calls ‘rigged,’ attacked the House select committee probing Jan. 6th as the ‘unselect’ panel, and sought to engineer primaries against the small group of Republicans who voted to impeach him.
The McCarthy tapes have not gone over well with former chief White House strategist Steve Bannon, who cast it as disloyal on his podcast.
‘Right there you’re hearing all the money, all the leadership in the Republican Party, how they plot, in probably Trump’s weakest moment, when the whole world turned against him,’ Bannon said.