Matt Gaetz is trying to oust a GOP congressman who once screamed at him on the House floor

  • In January 2023, Rep. Mike Bost got up and screamed at Matt Gaetz as he trashed Kevin McCarthy.

  • Now, Gaetz is backing Bost's primary challenger: failed GOP gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey.

  • Gaetz called the Illinois congressman "lackluster" and compared him to Liz Cheney.

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida is seeking to end the career of a fellow GOP congressman who once screamed at him on the House floor.

Gaetz is endorsing Darren Bailey — a former Illinois state representative who was the GOP's unsuccessful nominee for governor in 2022 — in his primary campaign against Rep. Mike Bost.

"Darren is a proven conservative, a fighter, and undeniably an upgrade over the lackluster Republican incumbent," Gaetz said in a statement. "I helped defeat Liz Cheney when she faced a strong challenger in her race, and I'm confident we can do the same when we hit the trail in Southern Illinois."

Bailey has already been endorsed by Rep. Mary Miller, a House Freedom Caucus member and one of Bost's home-state colleagues. Gaetz is set to headline a rally with Bailey next Friday in Herrin, Illinois.

The endorsement was first reported by POLITICO. Bost told the outlet that he "never considered Matt a threat."

"I considered him an ass, but never a threat," said Bost.

Bost famously screamed at Gaetz as he was speaking on the House floor in January 2023, when Gaetz and other hard-right Republicans were withholding their support for Kevin McCarthy's speakership bid.

"This is not going to bring anyone," Bost could be heard saying before being drowned out and gaveled down. The Illinois congressman also reportedly lunged at Gaetz during a closed-door GOP meeting in October after the Florida Republican led the ouster of McCarthy.

Bost had a reputation for angry outbursts when he previously served in the Illinois House of Representatives, and he reportedly started stress-vomiting during the October speakership fight.

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