What is the Capitol Hill Club? Matt Gaetz mocked after he cancels membership

'Staff are celebrating' jokes internet after GOP Rep cancels membership due to DC's vaccine mandate, gets trolled by Rep Swalwell as well

                            What is the Capitol Hill Club? Matt Gaetz mocked after he cancels membership
The entrance to the Capitol Hill Club (Capitol Hill Club website) with an insert of Matt Gaetz (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Matt Gaetz found himself being brutally trolled for taking a hardline stance against Washington DC's new vaccine mandate on January 18, 2022. The controversial Florida Republican announced he was giving up his membership to the Capitol Hill Club after the private club announced it would require patrons to be vaccinated to enter. In response, the net jumped in joy, with even Democrat Eric Swalwell joining in the trolling session.

Republicans have firmly refused to accept vaccine or mask mandates, working to undermine them all over the US. The day he took over as Governor of Virginia, the first thing Glenn Youngkin did was scrap the state's mask mandate. In response, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki applauded schools for defying those orders. Meanwhile in Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis has openly been fighting against the Biden administration's efforts, including in court against any kind of mandates. 


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The situation in Democrat-controlled states and cities though is vastly different. California has widely adopted a mask mandate, and New York City requires vaccines for most external activities. DC's Mayor Muriel Bowser has also announced a similar wide-reaching vaccine mandate in the capital, which the Capitol Hill Club announced it would be following, much to the disdain of many Republicans.


What is the Capitol Hill Club?

The highly exclusive club is meant for Republicans only and was founded by former New Jersey Congressman James C. Auchincloss in 1951. It is important to note that the club has no affiliation to the Republican National Committee or the GOP itself, but is rather seen as a common meeting point for lawmakers and high-profile party members. It is located right next to the RNC headquarters and less than two blocks from the US Capitol.

The club is an extremely popular hangout zone for the GOP, with members of Congress spending more than $600,000 there in the first nine months of 2007, according to a Harper's Magazine article. The article goes on to state that it's also popular with lobbyists and business executives since it allows them to get face time with Congress members away from the public eye. Former Congressman Dick Armey once said that being at the club for the "right two hours during the week can truly pay off," indicating just how vital it is to politicians.

The club isn't just a casual meeting point, but from reports, it appears to be a key lifeline for Republicans, which is why it is odd that Matt Gaetz would cancel his membership. In a statement on social media, the Congressman said, "As a result of their compliance requiring vax papers for entry, I am canceling my membership at the Capitol Hill Club." A strong anti-vaxxer, Gaetz added, "As America First legislators, we have a duty to mandate freedom, not forced injections." However, the decision might not have had the effect he was hoping.



'Probably needs money for lawyers'

Rep. Swalwell led the trolling, responding, "I will also not eat at the Capitol Hill Club," to Gaetz's tweet. One user commented, "Child sex trafficker Matt Gaetz says he has canceled his membership at Capitol Hill Club because of their proof of vaccination requirement. I hope Capitol Hill Club staff are celebrating this fantastic news with a glass of wine, I would be." One person trolled, "The truth is, he's upset that the Capitol Hill Club started enforcing its "no minors unless accompanied by parents" rule." Another tweeted, "Matt Gaetz is canceling his Capitol Hill Club membership…probably needs money for lawyers now that his ex has immunity."






"A grateful Capitol Hill Club thanks Matt Gaetz," one user joked, while another tweeted, "And the crowd at the Capitol Hill Club roared..." One person trolled, "Extraordinary win-win for the remaining Capitol Hill Club members. It's always special when the trash takes itself out though."





Gaetz isn't the only Republican who is furious at the club. The Hill reported that numerous conservatives are considering boycotting the club, but facing pushback. "For some, there’s a mentality of ‘burn the house down.' The majority of the conference was in the camp of you need to protect the club," one GOP member told the publication. The infighting doesn't bode well for either the party or the club, which could have severe consequences. 

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