Republican house speaker Kevin McCarthy visited Donald Trump three weeks after January 6th because he was “depressed” and “not eating” following his election defeat, a new book has claimed.
In her new memoir, former congresswoman Liz Cheney accuses her fellow Republicans of “cowardice” and “craven” behaviour in going along with Mr Trump’s claims of a stolen election despite knowing they were nonsense.
In one passage, she describes confronting McCarthy, who was then speaker of the House of representatives, about his decision to visit the president’s estate at Mar-a-Lago so soon after the violence at the Capitol.
“Mar-a-Lago? What the hell, Kevin?” Ms Cheney reports asking McCarthy, according to extracts seen by CNN.
“They’re really worried,” Mr McCarthy allegedly said, referring to Mr Trump’s aides. “Trump’s not eating, so they asked me to come see him.”
“What? You went to Mar-a-Lago because Trump’s not eating?” Ms Cheney shot back.
“Yeah, he’s really depressed,” McCarthy allegedly replied.
A spokesperson for Mr Trump told CNN that the book belonged “in the fiction section” and that the story was “completely fabricated”.
A spokesperson for Mc McCarthy said that Ms Cheney was suffering from “McCarthy Derangement Syndrome”, without explicitly denying her claims.
The conversation with McCarthy is one of many eyebrow-raising episodes in Ms Cheney’s memoir, entitled Oath and Honor.
Ms Cheney, who is the daughter of former vice president Dick Cheney, is a longtime critic of Mr Trump who was finally ejected from her post in 2022 after serving on the House select committee investigating the Capitol riot.
In her book, she condemns much of the GOP as “enablers and collaborators” who “violate[d] their oath to the Constitution” in order to stay on the good side of Mr Trump and his vocal fanbase.
In another passage, she says McCarthy told her that Mr Trump knew he had actually lost the 2020 election but needed to “go through all the stages of grief”.