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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has been rooming in GOP pollster Frank Luntz’s Washington, DC, apartment since the start of the pandemic, according to a report.
The revelation was first made by Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” which aired a segment on Monday evening making the claim, including a written statement from McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) spokesperson confirming that the GOP leader had, in fact, “rented a room in Washington at a fair market price from Frank.”
It is not clear what price, if any, McCarthy is paying Luntz to crash at his condo.
Luntz owns four apartments in the swanky Penn Quarter building, all of which are on the penthouse floor. He conducted a major renovation to turn the four smaller units into a larger one.
Reps for the GOP leader did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment. Nor did Luntz.
Luntz is a prominent pollster and GOP strategist known for conducting focus groups to track responses to major political events, from presidential debates to COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy.
The 59-year-old strategist was taken to task by Carlson last week on his namesake show over some of the corporate clients he now represents as founder of Luntz Global, including Amazon, Facebook, Google, Nike, The Coca-Cola Company, The Walt Disney Company, Delta Air Lines and more.
Many of those companies have opted to enter the political arena, taking “woke” stances on heated issues.
Luntz said in January of this year that he no longer identified as a Republican, after emerging as a critic of the GOP in the years after President Trump took the helm of the party.
He and McCarthy, however, have maintained their long friendship.
Carlson questioned how Luntz, who is also a Fox News contributor, was able to “wind up with so much influence in the Republican party” — despite having left the party.
“Why do [Republicans] listen to someone like Frank Luntz, rather than their own voters?” Carlson asked, repeatedly stating his concern that Luntz had “outsized influence” over GOP policymaking.
Asked about the living arrangement on “Fox & Friends” Tuesday morning, McCarthy laughed off any suggestion that the arrangement created a conflict of interest, while noting that he had since gone back to staying at his office.
“I didn’t know how this was controversial. Frank has been a friend of mine for more than 30 years. I met him with Newt Gingrich back when they were working on the Contract with America,” he said, referring to Republican leadership of the 1990s that led an effort to take back the House of Representatives.
“You know, as the Democrats took over they started changing the House around and so yeah, I rented a room from Frank for a couple months,” he continued, not specifying what changes were made at the Capitol that required him to stop staying there.
McCarthy then said he planned to go back to staying “on my couch in my office.”
Pressed further on the matter, specifically whether it was inappropriate for the top Republican in the House to rent from such a prominent political figure, the California lawmaker said no.
“Well, Frank’s not a lobbyist,” McCarthy replied, “Frank’s a friend I knew 15 years before I ever got in [to politics].”
Additional reporting by Juliegrace Brufke
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