President Joe Biden said in an interview on Friday that House Speaker Kevin McCarthy had made a “terrible bargain” and that “in order to keep the speakership, he’s willing to do things that he, I think, he knows are inconsistent with the constitutional processes.”
Asked about the looming government shutdown, and the impeachment inquiry that McCarthy agreed to authorize in the hopes of keeping right-wing Republicans from ousting him from his post as speaker, Biden criticized the role of a “group of MAGA Republicans who genuinely want to have a fundamental change in the way that the system works. And that’s what worries me the most.” He marveled that former President Donald Trump had described himself in a recent speech as “retribution” on behalf of his supporters, and that Republicans “seem to be encouraging it.”
The comments came as part of a wide-ranging interview with ProPublica contributor John Harwood that will be published Sunday morning. In it, Biden discussed everything from what he portrayed as looming threats to democracy, including his views of the roles played by Fox News and Elon Musk, to his concerns about the need for ethics reform on the Supreme Court.