Florida representative Byron Donalds appeared on a Tuesday episode of MSNBC’s The Reid Out discussing the newly elected Republican-led Congress.
Host Joy Reid noted Donalds had previously been nominated several times during last week’s 15 ballot vote to decide a new Speaker of the House. During one of Donalds nominations, he received 20 votes from Republicans defecting from Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy.
Reid noted California Democratic representatives Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell, along with Minnesota representative Ilhan Omar, would be removed from committee assignments, according to McCarthy.
The MSNBC host further noted criticism of representatives George Santos of New York, Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, and Paul Gosar of Arizona would be placed on committees in their absence, and asked Donalds if it was a “good look” for the Republican party.
“No, I think them going back on committees is what should happen,” Donalds replied.
“Look, what we told Democrat leadership when they went down this pathway of removing members from committee is basically saying, you should not do that because if it’s good for the goose, it’s good for the gander,” he continued, noting former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi set the precedent for removing opposing party members from committees.
“Let’s be very clear, Ilhan Omar has said things that are reprehensible,” Donalds continued as Reid began talking over the Florida representative. “She’s said terrible things about the Jewish community, so much so that resolutions had to go to the House floor about them, and they were watered down.”
Donalds reiterated Pelosi’s precedent would lead Republicans to follow in their Democratic colleagues’ footsteps, to which the MSNBC host claimed the practice was political revenge.
Reid cut Donalds off, claiming the practice of removing members from committees had happened previously. Donalds reiterated the Republican strategy was cutting spending and focusing on border security.
Reid further noted plans discussed by the Republican chair, including investigating woke social advocacy in the Department of Defense (DOD), restructuring entitlement programs, investigating the withdrawal of Afghanistan, calling on Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas to resign, leading a subcommittee to probe weaponization of the federal government, and investigate Biden’s classified documents along with the origin of COVID 19.
The MSNBC host continually steamrolled the Florida representative throughout his response.
“Do you know that Social Security is going to be insolvent in 2035?” Donalds asked.
“It is not, that’s not true. It’s actually not true,” Reid repeated, cutting the Florida representative off throughout his response.
“Joy, I’m a finance professional, I do more than just Congress. I worked in the financial community,” Donalds said after Reid allowed him to elaborate. “I am telling you. Social Security will go insolvent.”
Reid continued criticizing Donalds’ preference for free market solutions before circling back to his speaker nomination last week asking his “specific qualifications,” though continued speaking over him as he responded.
The MSNBC host criticized Donalds, who has served in Congress since 2021, though previously served in the Florida state legislature beginning in 2016. Reid further claimed Donalds’ nomination to Speaker of the House was a diversity choice in response to Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries’ nomination.
“The reality is that a lot of members actually do believe in my ability to lead,” Donalds responded.
Am I to be despised for my youth because I served one term? My members know I have the ability to engage other members through the conference, but it’s even bigger than that. Listen, we were at an impasse last week in our speakership elections. … At the same time, I was working with members on both sides of our conference to make sure that we can get the job done, and we did. That’s the only thing that matters.
McCarthy ultimately secured speakership late Friday night.