Nothing brings together two diametrically opposed political leaders like Kentucky Rep. Thomas Massie.
Massie, a libertarian-leaning Republican congressman, drew ire from both sides of the aisle Friday for threatening to demand a roll call vote on the $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill that passed unanimously in the Senate earlier this week. Both Democrats and Republicans were hoping to pass the legislation on an expedited voice vote, both due to its overwhelming bipartisan support and the health concerns associated with having several hundred members of Congress gather in the House chamber in the midst of the pandemic.
However, Massie tweeted Friday morning that he had objections to the complex relief package and planned to request a recorded roll call vote. The individual demand could only be blocked if a majority of House members were present.
In normal times, that wouldn’t be an issue. But due to the coronavirus outbreak, many members had returned to their home states. And while the House was ultimately able to gather the needed majority to block Massie’s request and pass the urgent bill through a voice vote, the singular effort reportedly annoyed fellow lawmakers, many of whom were forced to scramble back to Washington, D.C., early Friday morning.
Foremost among Massie’s critics was President Donald Trump, who called the congressman a “third rate Grandstander” Friday morning.
…& costly. Workers & small businesses need money now in order to survive. Virus wasn’t their fault. It is “HELL” dealing with the Dems, had to give up some stupid things in order to get the “big picture” done. 90% GREAT! WIN BACK HOUSE, but throw Massie out of Republican Party!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 27, 2020
The Republican president’s tweets elicited unexpected agreement from one of his most forceful critics, John Kerry, who chimed in on his increasingly salty Twitter account.
“Breaking news: Congressman Massie has tested positive for being an asshole,” Kerry wrote. “He must be quarantined to prevent the spread of his massive stupidity.”
Breaking news: Congressman Massie has tested positive for being an asshole. He must be quarantined to prevent the spread of his massive stupidity. He’s given new meaning to the term #Masshole. (Finally, something the president and I can agree on!) https://t.co/N1CNLPsZjc
— John Kerry (@JohnKerry) March 27, 2020
The former U.S. secretary of state and Massachusetts senator — who had a heated exchange with Massie over climate change during a hearing last April — added that the congressman had “given new meaning” to the term Masshole.
“Finally, something the president and I can agree on,” he added (since leaving his post as the country’s top diplomat, Kerry has been intensely critical of Trump, particularly on foreign affairs and climate change).
For his part, Trump commended Kerry for the fiery tweet Friday afternoon.
“Never knew John Kerry had such a good sense of humor! Very impressed!” he wrote.