A skirmish between shouty Fox News host Mark Levin and several conservative congressmen who’ve stood in the way of Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s House speakership has turned into an all-out war.
Late Tuesday afternoon, far-right Rep. Andy Biggs, one of the five members who took an insult-laden verbal lashing from Levin last week, fired back at the right-wing talk radio host with equal ferocity.
“Levin is the biggest fraud in politics right now. For years, this guy castigated McCarthy publicly (with no shame). Now, he is all in for him and wants his audience to turn a blind eye,” Biggs declared on Twitter. “Total fraud.”
The Arizona congressman’s tweet was paired with a photoshopped image of Levin holding a pair of flip flops while standing on a fictional Flip-Flop Island. “Total Fraud & Flip-Flopper,” the graphic labeled the Fox host. The image also included several old quotes showing how Levin had previously ripped McCarthy as being a “RINO dimwit” and “BOUGHT AND PAID FOR”—fighting words in Trumpworld.
From there, the name-calling has only grown more intense.
On his Tuesday evening radio show, Levin responded to Biggs’ tweet by calling him “a phony, a fake, and a fraud.” (While Levin bills himself as ideologically consistent over the years, he most notably was a “Never Trumper” before becoming the ex-president’s informal picture book hype man. Likewise, his views on McCarthy appear to have evolved over time.)
“He appears on cable from time to time with that goofball look. He’s barely able to complete sentences,” the radio host continued, before arguing that Biggs merely seeks to create “drama” over his opposition to McCarthy’s speakership.
“I don’t know if McCarthy will turn out to be the greatest speaker in American history or the worst speaker in history,” Levin said. “That can be dealt with after the fact, but right now, Biggs is deceiving his constituents, deceiving the American people that he has some plan to go forward.”
From there, instead of offering up much of an explanation for his old McCarthy-bashing, Levin proceeded to label Biggs an “imbecile” and a “moron.”
“We’re losing our country. It’s unraveling, and Andy Biggs is not the answer, and he doesn’t have any answers. He’s a moron. He’s an imbecile,” the radio host concluded. “He’s a bleeding hemorrhoid on the body politic!”
The unusual war between a decidedly right-wing Fox News and his uber-conservative congressional counterparts began late last month when Biggs, along with compatriots Reps. Matt Gaetz, Bob Good, Ralph Norman, and Matt Rosendale signaled their intention to oppose McCarthy’s ascent to the U.S. House speaker role. In response, Levin—ever the shouter—declared the five lawmakers to be “boneheads” and “saboteurs” playing “right into the hands of the media.”
Biggs’ office didn’t return The Daily Beast’s request for comment on Wednesday. While McCarthy won a House Republican nomination to become speaker, he’ll still face a floor vote in January, where he could encounter troubles if more than three Republicans vote against handing him the gavel.