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Matt Gaetz will run for president in 2024 if Trump doesn’t, and I’m excited

From Jewish space lasers to Cuban sons to Confederate statues to goldfish, this promises to be a wild ride

Holly Baxter
New York
Tuesday 01 June 2021 15:16 BST
Matt Gaetz hace un gesto durante el mitin "America First" en The Villages,
Matt Gaetz hace un gesto durante el mitin "America First" en The Villages, (REUTERS)

Everyone’s favorite alleged sex offender Matt Gaetz has reassured us that if Donald Trump doesn’t step up again in 2024, he’s willing to take on the mantle. In a text message to the New York Post (yes, that’s right), he wrote on Wednesday that “I support Donald Trump for president. I’ve directly encouraged him to run and he gives me every indication he will. If Trump doesn’t run, I’m sure I could defeat whatever remains of Joe Biden by 2024.”

Though it’s been suggested that Gaetz might stand in order to help out his friend Ron DeSantis on the debate stage (so cute!), that shouldn’t preclude us from imagining the joys of a Matt Gaetz presidency. Because there’s a lot this red-blooded American can give to the land of the free.

First, looking back fondly on the time he invited a Holocaust denier to the State of the Union in 2018, let’s consider the caliber of people who might serve in a Gaetz-led cabinet. Marjorie Taylor Greene, surely, would be a shoo-in — you might remember her from such controversies as “Did Jewish space lasers cause wildfires in California?” and “Is wearing a face-mask during a pandemic the same as being Jewish during the Holocaust?” Greene appeared alongside Gaetz this week at a rally in Arizona where they talked about election results not being real if the person you wanted didn’t win. With that kind of attitude, Greene could keep any ally in power for a long, long time.

Following in the footsteps of his best guy Donald J Trump, Gaetz might be tempted to bring unqualified family members into the White House and give them extended security clearance. Unfortunately, there seems to be a lot of confusion over Gaetz’s family situation, with him claiming that he has an adoptive Cuban “son” named Nestor (who is an adult) during a Black Lives Matter debate last year. It’s understood that Nestor has not been formally adopted (their relationship is defined “by love, not by paperwork,” Gaetz told People magazine) and that he is the brother of an ex-girlfriend. Many have criticized Gaetz for suddenly bringing up his “son” during a heated debate about race in Congress after never mentioning him before, but I’d say they’re giving him a hard time. Considering recent allegations about his sex life, it’s perfectly believable to me that the brother of an ex-girlfriend of Gaetz’s could be young enough to be considered his child.

You might think that feeling a parental affiliation for Nestor might not count as a get-out-of-jail free card for all issues on race, but I’d ask you to at least give Gaetz the time of day when it comes to these things. Who of us could fail to be stirred when the Congressman said on Fox News that “the organizers of Black Lives Matter — who pledge allegiance to the destruction of America — have a lot more in common with the Confederate generals that they hate than they would like to admit”? Now that’s some bold Republican thinking. Considering the far-right’s penchant for flying Confederate flags and defending Confederate statues, I’m going to be generous and suggest Gaetz was trying his damned hardest to conjure up a compliment. And isn’t that all we can ask of him?

Now, Matt Gaetz may not be the best orator of our time. He once gave us the so-many-mixed-metaphors-it’s-basically-experimental-prose soundbite “In a world where the body politic has the memory span of a goldfish, you’ve got to have the ability to reinvent yourself in the game many times.” But anyone who reads this oceanic, philosophical, vaguely sports-related metaphor knows one thing: the guy knows how to put anyone on the back foot. Isn’t that what America needs right now; what America craves? Do we really want someone to turn up to the G7 and say something boring like, “We’re committed to the Paris climate accord and working toward a peaceable relationship with Iran”? No! What we want is someone to jump in with two feet, introduce Angela Merkel as his daughter, shout: “Crabs! Communism! Aristotle!” and then run out the door with a briefcase of Russia’s state secrets before anyone realizes what’s happening.

Yes, say what you like about our Matthew, but he’s not afraid to be bold.

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