House

Gaetz, Greene start tour of America

Reps. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) kicked off their tour of America Friday as two of the most conservative - and controversial - House lawmakers look to rally former President Trump's base.

Gaetz and Greene are headed Friday to The Villages, a large Florida retirement community, for the first stop of their "America First Tour." The location has become a popular stop for lawmakers looking to make a splash in the Sunshine State. 

Greene promoted the stop on her Twitter page, saying she's "hearing it's going to be a party!" and will be part of an effort to "Save America" and "Stop Socialism."

Gaetz also said in a press release in April announcing the tour that it would be an attempt to "rally the 74 million Americans that voted for President Trump in the last election and highlight the destructive failings of the radical left and their puppet in the White House, Joe Biden." 

Besides the tour, the conservative duo has also filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to form a joint fundraising committee named Put America First, a body that will allow them to accept large checks from donors.

Both Greene and Gaetz have cast themselves as staunch conservatives and among the most vociferous of Trump's supporters in Congress.

Beyond their shared platforms, which included efforts to challenge the results of the 2020 presidential election, the two lawmakers both have been embroiled in a slew of controversies.

Greene was stripped of her committee assignments earlier this year over her support for conspiracy theories, including past remarks backing QAnon, and comments she made suggesting violence against prominent Democrats. 

Gaetz has found himself in the middle of a federal sex crimes investigation tied to former Seminole County tax collector Joel Greenberg. He has not been charged with a crime, but has been accused of paying underage girls or offering them gifts in exchange for sex.

Gaetz has denied all the allegations against him.

"I'm a marked man in Congress. I'm a canceled man in some corners of the Internet. I might be a wanted man by the deep state. But I am a Florida man, and it is good to be home," Gaetz proclaimed at the Friday event. "Today, we send a strong message to the weak establishment in both parties: America First isn't going away. We're going on tour."

Updated at 10:08 p.m.

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