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- Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene bid $100,000 for Kevin McCarthy’s cherry-flavored chapstick.
- McCarthy also agreed to have dinner with the winner and any donors or friends they brought along.
- The money will go toward the House GOP’s chief campaign arm.
Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene bid six figures for House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s chapstick.
That’s according to Politico’s Olivia Beavers, who reported that the Georgia congresswoman won McCarthy’s cherry-flavored chapstick after bidding $100,000 for it at a 15-minute GOP fundraising auction held Tuesday.
—Olivia Beavers (@Olivia_Beavers) May 23, 2023
Politico reported that Greene began bidding on the chapstick after McCarthy agreed to have dinner with the winner and any donors or supporters they decided to bring. The $100,000 will go to the National Republican Campaign Committee.
McCarthy and Greene’s working relationship had a rocky start. When Greene first ran for Congress in 2020, McCarthy and other House Republican leaders endorsed her opponent and described her as an unserious candidate who did not reflect the GOP’s values. And after Greene arrived on Capitol Hill in 2021, McCarthy and other establishment Republicans quickly distanced themselves from her.
But the two lawmakers have forged a close alliance in the years since. The New York Times reported that Greene and McCarthy frequently exchange text messages and have one-on-one meetings in McCarthy’s office. The California Republican has also gone to significant lengths to defend Greene, and Greene in turn has become a powerful and influential voice in McCarthy’s inner circle.
Greene, a member of the far-right House Freedom Caucus, was also instrumental in McCarthy’s ascent to House Speaker. She broke with her caucus and GOP colleagues like Reps. Lauren Boebert and Matt Gaetz to endorse McCarthy in his embattled bid for the speakership.
McCarthy’s gratitude for the Georgia congresswoman’s support was on full display after he won the speakership. “I will never leave that woman,” he told a friend, according to The Times. “I will always take care of her.”
Democrats skewered Tuesday’s GOP auction after Greene’s bid was first reported.
“They doing this insane chapstick shit while the country teeters on default,” tweeted Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar. “Wild.”
She was referring to the increasingly contentious talks between Democrats and Republicans over raising the debt ceiling to avoid the US defaulting as soon as June 1. House Republicans have called for deep spending cuts in exchange for their support, while Democrats say wealthy Americans should pay more taxes to help lower the federal deficit.
GOP lawmakers met Tuesday with President Joe Biden’s aides to discuss the negotiations, but Republican Rep. Garrett Graves said after the meeting that little progress had been made, adding, “I don’t think things are going well.”
Biden, meanwhile, met with McCarthy on Monday and said that while it was “productive,” he had “reiterated once again that default is off the table and the only way to move forward is in good faith toward a bipartisan agreement.”
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