McCarthy told Trump that Jan. 6 rioters were ‘trying to f—— kill me’: book
During a heated phone call as Jan. 6 rioters were breaking into the U.S. Capitol, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) told former President Trump that those breaching the building were “trying to f—— kill” him, according to an account in an upcoming book.
The new detail about the Jan. 6 call comes from “Weapons of Mass Delusion: When the Republican Party Lost Its Mind” by Robert Draper, which is being released next week, and was reported in Politico Playbook Tuesday morning.
Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-Wash.) in February of last year first revealed McCarthy’s account of the call to House Republicans, and a CNN story about the call added additional details from other GOP lawmakers.
“Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are,” Trump said.
Citing a Republican whom McCarthy told about the call a few hours later, the book said McCarthy yelled back at the president.
“More upset?” McCarthy yelled. “They’re trying to f—— kill me!”
CNN reported in February 2021, citing another unnamed Republican, that McCarthy had told Trump that rioters were breaking into his office through the windows and said, “Who the f— do you think you are talking to?”
McCarthy in interviews has not denied the comment from Trump, but has declined to elaborate on the call. His office did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the new detail from the Draper book.
The House GOP leader, who is hoping to be Speaker in a GOP majority next year, has been credited in multiple recent books and articles with helping to rehabilitate Trump’s image and standing in the Republican Party after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack. He said soon after Jan. 6 on the House floor that Trump bore some responsibility for the attack, but weeks later traveled to Mar-a-Lago to meet with the former president.