CNN aired an on-screen graphic naming 49 Republicans whom the network said declined interview requests. Gaetz, a Florida Republican, was not listed among them and took to Twitter to declare he was ready to chat.
Gaetz also tweeted screenshots of emails and text messages between his team and CNN staff, purportedly showing conversations over potential appearances on the network.
However, CNN disputed Gaetz' version of events, saying in a statement: "With all due respect, Congressman, your tweets are completely misleading. Your staff offered last week, but you were never confirmed for Monday’s shows. As we said earlier, we declined before this weekend’s tragedies."
The network also posted an image of a conversation a staffer had with a member of Gaetz's team on Friday, saying the Congressman would not be needed on Monday.
A spokesperson for Gaetz declined comment beyond the tweets. CNN did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Gaetz has not been rescheduled to appear on the network despite CNN calling for Republicans to discuss the tragic mass shootings that occurred last weekend in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio.
"We reached out to 50 Republican lawmakers to speak about this issue today. Forty-nine of them said no. Ted Yoho, a member of the House Freedom Caucus, he said yes,” CNN’s Jim Sciutto said on Monday afternoon when introducing an interview with Yoho.
Cable news watchdog Mediaite wrote that CNN led the interview “by naming and shaming” GOP lawmakers who declined to appear. CNN’s Jake Tapper also tweeted about Republicans who declined his interview request.