Reporter Witnesses Bizarre Confrontation of Congressmen

GOP's Tim Burchett accuses Kevin McCarthy of elbowing him in the back, gives pursuit
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2023 11:43 AM CST
Reporter Witnesses Bizarre Confrontation of Congressmen
Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, Oct. 23, 2023.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The House on Tuesday is working on a measure to avoid a government shutdown at the end of the week. And with the political drama came a little personal drama between two Republicans who don't seem to like each other very much. In a nutshell, Rep. Tim Burchett of Tennessee says Kevin McCarthy deliberately elbowed him in the back, reports the Hill. This unfolded as Burchett stopped to speak with NPR reporter Claudia Grisales in a hallway following a meeting of the Republican caucus on Tuesday morning, per ABC News.

McCarthy walked by them and "shoved Burchett," writes Grisales in a thread on X detailing the encounter. "Burchett lunged towards me," she writes, adding that she initially thought it was a joke. But then came the shouting and the chase, as recounted in Grisales' thread:

  • Burchett: "Why'd you elbow me in the back Kevin?!" he shouted. "Hey Kevin, you got any guts!?" He then pursued McCarthy down the hall.
  • Burchett: "Hey Kevin, why'd you walk behind me and elbow me in the back?"
  • McCarthy: "I didn't elbow you in the back."
  • Burchett: "You got no guts. ... What kind of chicken move is that?"
Burchett, as the above stories note, was one of eight Republicans who voted to oust McCarthy from his post as House speaker. (More Kevin McCarthy stories.)

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