Rep Matt Gaetz (R-Florida) called for abolishing of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Center of Disease Control (CDC), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) if they do not “come to heel” for conservatives.

Gaetz’s remarks, given at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), were met with loud applause. CPAC is an annual event at which the nation’s leading conservative activists give speeches, conduct straw polls and generate excitement over upcoming Republican campaigns.

Other Speakers at CPAC included former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, political strategist Steve Bannon and former President Donald Trump.

Gaetz and other far-right activists have had a strong distaste for the FBI since the investigation into Trump’s alleged strategic communications with Russia during the 2016 election. Their anger was only increased when the FBI raided Mar-a-Lago last August to recover classified documents that Trump refused to hand over.


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Their distaste for the CDC was sparked by the agency’s recommendations during the COVID-19 pandemic for wearing masks, social distancing and getting vaccines, which many conservatives believe was an infringement on their freedom.

Gaetz’s hatred of the DOJ is likely in-part personal, as Gaetz has been under investigation by the agency for alleged sex trafficking. He was accused of having sex with a 17-year-old girl and paying for her travel.

Gaetz has denied the allegations, and the DOJ announced last month that it was no longer seeking to press charges against the Florida congressman.

Gaetz is considered one of the most far-right members of Congress and was a key player in the Kevin McCarthy speakership debacle. Gaetz and several other members like Reps. Lauren Boebert (R-Colorado) and Matt Rosendale (R-Montana) used their leverage to make numerous demands, forcing McCarthy to make an array of concessions to the far-right flank of his party.

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