House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has faced calls by Democrats for his resignation after a joke on Saturday about hitting House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) with a gavel.
The remark occurred during a Tennessee Republican dinner on Saturday, according to the Washington Examiner. McCarthy was presented with a gavel with the words “Fire Pelosi” written on it.
“It will be hard not to hit her with it, but I will bang it down,” McCarthy reportedly said,according to reporter Yue Stella Yu.
— Yue Stella Yu (@bystellayu_tnsn) August 1, 2021
Ted Lieu (D-CA) said, “You should never be encouraging or threatening or joking about causing violence to anyone, including the Speaker of the House. You need to apologize for your statement, or resign.”
Dear @GOPLeader McCarthy: Don’t you think America has had enough political violence? You should never be encouraging or threatening or joking about causing violence to anyone, including the Speaker of the House. You need to apologize for your statement, or resign. https://t.co/jdP2bcmr5c
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) August 1, 2021
The gift is likely reference to Republican hopes for McCarthy to become House Speaker following the midterms. The GOP continues to push to retake power in the House in 2020 and put Pelosi out of her role as House Speaker.
The joke also serves as the latest in the ongoing back-and-forth attacks between McCarthy and Pelosi. She most recently called him a “moron” over his remarks regarding her new House mask mandate.