- Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz says he has been talking to major networks about potential gigs.
- Gaetz said he had spoken with Newsmax, OANN, and Fox News, among others, about “life after Congress.”
- But Fox News told the Daily Beast they have “no interest in hiring him.”
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Florida GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz again teased a possible early retirement from Congress on Wednesday, saying he’d been speaking to executives at popular right-wing news networks to suss out possible gigs. But his job hunt hit an early stumbling block when a Fox News spokesperson said the network had no interest in hiring him.
Gaetz told the Daily Beast he had been talking to major right-wing news networks including Newsmax, the One American News Network, and Fox News, over the past weeks.
“Yes. I’ve had many conversations with many people about life after Congress. These conversations have been very general in nature and have never included me soliciting or receiving an offer of employment,” he said.
Gaetz went on to say that there was “not a single conservative television station” that he had not had a “passing conversation with about life after Congress.”
“I have neither received nor solicited offers from any of them. But yes, I’ve talked to either executives, producers, or hosts at Newsmax, OAN, Fox, Fox Business, Real America’s Voice, and probably others I’m forgetting in this moment as I focus intently on refuting false accusations against me,” he said.
But Fox News denied this through a statement to the Daily Beast. A spokesperson said when asked about Gaetz’s claims: “No one with any level of authority has had conversations with Matt Gaetz for any of our platforms and we have no interest in hiring him.”
The Florida lawmaker is currently facing a complicated political scandal, with an ongoing federal probe into whether he had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl and paid for her to travel with him, which would be a violation of sex-trafficking laws. He’s also the subject of a related investigation into what Gaetz says is an alleged extortion attempt by an ex-Department of Justice official.
It’s unclear if Gaetz’s pursuance of media jobs is at all related to the investigations, or if it’s possibly tied to his Congressional colleagues’ vocal dislike of him.
Insider spoke to more than a dozen of Gaetz’s colleagues on Tuesday who said he’s widely considered a showboat and is among the “meanest people in politics.”
One GOP House staffer said: “He’s not in the legislative business. He’s just out there to blow s— up and get on TV.”
Axios had earlier reported that Gaetz was telling confidants that he was thinking of leaving Congress for a potential gig at Newsmax. The outlet said that sources indicated Gaetz was seriously contemplating the offer, as he had engaged the network in early conversations about what his role could look like.