Newsmax viewers who tuned in to watch Greg Kelly Reports on Friday at 10 p.m. were not greeted by Greg Kelly, but by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL).
While it is not unusual for cable news hosts to take off Fridays ahead of holiday weekends, it is abnormal for a network to tap a sitting member of Congress to be a guest host.
Not everyone at the network is pleased with the decision.
Gaetz greeted Newsmax viewers on Friday night with a wisecrack about Kelly.
“You’re on the right channel,” Gaetz told viewers. “If you’re confused, your eyes are not failing you, and Greg Kelly did not suddenly get better hair,” the congressman said. “I’m Matt Gaetz. Thanks for joining us on Greg Kelly Reports. Greg has the night off and I have the biggest stories driving Washington, D.C. right now.”
Gaetz then teased the top stories and launched into a monologue about debt ceiling negotiations between House Republicans – of which he is one – and President Joe Biden.
“I was surprised seeing a sitting member of Congress hosting a network show,” a source who works at Newsmax told Mediaite. “Worst idea I’ve heard in a long time.”
Congressional Republicans like Gaetz and the White House have been wrangling over the debt ceiling and a potential national default. The ceiling limits the amount of money the government may borrow. Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and his caucus are attempting to exact spending cuts and additional work requirements for welfare recipients as a condition for raising the limit.
Gaetz’s brief hosting gig came two years after Axios reported he was considering retiring from Congress to potentially take a job at Newsmax. The congressman had contacted the network seeking a job, but was rebuffed, according to Reuters. At the time, Gaetz was under federal investigation in a case involving the alleged sex trafficking of a minor. The Department of Justice ultimately did not pursue charges against the congressman.
He denied wrongdoing throughout.
Watch above via Newsmax.
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