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“If you want leaders who enable and spread his destructive lies, I am not your person, you have many others to choose from. That will be your legacy,” said Cheney, booing her colleagues at the beginning of her remarks .
“But I promise you that after today I will fight to restore our party and our nation to conservative principles, defeat socialism, defend our republic, and make the GOP worthy of Lincoln’s party again be.” She added.
According to sources in the room, Cheney concluded with a prayer quoting a verse in the Bible: “You will know the truth and the truth will set you free.”
McCarthy found himself under increasing pressure to oust Cheney from Trump and the right flank of his conference – a crucial electoral bloc if he is to claim the speaker’s gavel after halftime.
His urge to drop his own number 3 culminated in an eviction from the lead on Wednesday which proved extremely shocking as the result quickly became predictable. Cheney was removed from his position as conference chair, a role responsible for both party filing and membership services.
Veteran GOP MP Virginia Foxx from North Carolina presented the formal resolution to launch Cheney in camera during Wednesday’s meeting. “The old saying for guides is, if no one is following you, you just go for a walk. You, Liz, just go for a walk,” Foxx said, according to a source in the room.
McCarthy told Republicans it was a “tough day” but he supported the motion, arguing it was necessary for party’s unity.
After Cheney booted, she walked down the middle of the hall – through the crowd – and left the room. Members later gave her a standing ovation in recognition of her service.
“I will do everything I can to make sure the former president never gets anywhere near the Oval Office,” Cheney told reporters after the vote.
A replacement election to chair the House’s GOP conference will take place on Friday, McCarthy announced at the meeting. So far, Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York – a moderate Trump ally – is the only candidate for this position. She worked quickly to lock down support while McCarthy and members close to him beat members hard in support of them.
“Every day on which we re-litigate the past is one less day on which we have to seize the future,” wrote McCarthy in a letter to his colleagues before the vote. “If we are to succeed in preventing the radical democratic agenda from destroying our country.” These internal conflicts must be resolved so as not to interfere with the efforts of our collective team. “
Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.), A House Freedom Caucus member who voted to confirm election results and set a deadline for Cheney’s speech, said Wednesday the House GOP “canceled” Cheney he disagreed with Trump.
Cheney’s removal from the leadership dealt a demoralizing blow to the small but vocal anti-Trump wing of the GOP, while delivering a grand victory to the die-hard Conservatives, who failed to defeat them in February and have since been excited about their removal.
In a post-vote statement, Trump drove a winning lap, calling Cheney a “warmonger” and a “talking point for Democrats”.
“Liz Cheney is a bitter, terrible person. I watched her yesterday and realized how bad she is for the Republican Party,” he said. “She has no personality or anything good to do with politics or our country.”
It’s breathtaking fall out of favor with Cheney, a political scion who was once considered a fast-rising star in the party. The Wyoming Republican made a Senate offer last year to seek fortune in the House of Representatives and was installed as the future speaker. Now Cheney is a woman in GOP exile who may have trouble keeping her congressional seat at all next fall.
But Cheney, who has described the debate as a fight for democracy and freedom, has made it clear that she feels comfortable being overthrown because she holds on to her beliefs. She didn’t try to convince GOP colleagues to keep her on the job. In a fiery speech on the eve of her fall, she defiantly viewed Trump as a “threat we have never seen” and voiced concerns about the direction of her party.
“Silence and ignoring the lie encourages the liar,” Cheney said Tuesday evening, carrying a replica pin of George Washington’s flag of battle. “I’m not going to take part. I won’t sit back and watch in silence while others lead our group downstairs.” A path that gives up the rule of law and joins the former president’s crusade to undermine our democracy. “
“We have to tell the truth,” she added. “Our election was not stolen and America did not fail.”
The frustrations within the GOP conference over Cheney have been brewing for weeks, with one member describing the situation as a “slow burn”. After slightly staying in power in February following her vote against Trump, Cheney continued to speak about the former president in interviews, press conferences and speeches. Republicans began to complain that they were being asked about Cheney by their voters and donors at home.
Those tensions reached a boiling point at the GOP’s annual Orlando retreat late last month, where Cheney again publicly split with McCarthy over Trump in what other Republicans viewed as undermining their message. Efforts to drive her off the number 3 in the lead quickly escalated afterward.
Even some of Cheney’s closest allies, such as Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.) And Moderate, who voted for full confirmation of Trump’s loss, said a change was needed. Lawmakers from every corner of the conference said Cheney should have focused on beating up the Biden administration – rather than constantly shining the spotlight on its internal divisions over Trump.
“There is no Republican conference chairman who is constantly raising democratic issues,” said Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, co-founder of Freedom Caucus and ally of Trump. “There cannot be a Republican conference chairman who takes positions 90 percent of the party is against. … I just don’t see how helpful that is. “
While McCarthy argued a few months ago that the GOP was a “big tent” that could house a variety of viewpoints, Wednesday’s vote suggests that the party’s rival Trump factions in the party may be too difficult to reconcile .
“Look, I am everything for unity. I am everything for unity and the truth,” said MP Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), Who voted for the indictment against Trump, told reporters on Wednesday. But he added, “Truth cannot coexist with lies, truth cannot coexist with lies. You cannot unite with that.”
Kinzinger aside, the vast majority of House Republicans hadn’t gotten into conflict over dethroning Cheney – even if some of them were dissatisfied with the way it looked or privately worried about the potential impact on voters in 2022. Republicans say McCarthy is likely to have little consequence, at least internally, in removing Cheney from her leadership positions.
And unlike Cheney’s attempt to dethrone Cheney, McCarthy is not about a simultaneous drama caused by controversial MP Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.). At the time, McCarthy found it politically disastrous to defend Greene while ousting Cheney, and so ultimately stood behind both lawmakers. McCarthy is now back from the turmoil in Greene and on January 6th.
But the Democrats plan to make the moment as painful as possible for Republicans. They have already picked up on the Cheney chaos and used their displacement to tie the entire GOP to Trump, QAnon’s conspiracy theories, and lies about right-wing election fraud.
“Liz Cheney was telling the truth to power and she’s being fired for it,” said Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer (DN.Y.) on Tuesday.