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Politics GOP leader McCarthy says Republicans concerned Cheney can't 'carry out the job'

19:50  04 may  2021
19:50  04 may  2021 Source:   abcnews.go.com

Fractures in GOP on display as Liz Cheney faces criticism

  Fractures in GOP on display as Liz Cheney faces criticism House Conference Chairwoman Rep. Liz Cheney is once again facing the ire of her colleagues and GOP voters, laying bare the ongoing and internal divisions within the GOP about how Republicans should move forward in the wake of former President Donald Trump. © Erin Schaff/Pool/Getty Images Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) attends a congressional tribute to the late Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick who lies in honor in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol on February 3, 2021 in Washington, DC. Officer Sicknick died as a result of injuries he sustained during the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy said on Tuesday a growing number of Republicans in the conference are taking issue with Rep. Liz Cheney and he signaled that her days as GOP Conference chair -- the third-ranking Republican in the House -- could be numbered.

Liz Cheney wearing glasses © J. Scott Applewhite/AP, FILE

"I have heard from members concerned about her ability to carry out the job as conference chair, to carry out the message. We all need to be working as one if we're able to win the majority," McCarthy said on Fox News.

While he did not explicitly state what her future will be within the party, all signals point to another possible vote to oust her from her position as conference chair.

How Democrats Learned to Love the Cheneys

  How Democrats Learned to Love the Cheneys Is Cheney's dissent conviction or calculation?This metamorphosis—lampooned as “strange new respect” by journalist Tom Bethell in 1992 as the liberal journalist’s instinct to overpraise any leftward gesture by a right-wing politician—can be accomplished any number of ways. In Romney’s case, he achieved his strange new respect in 2020, when he cast his ballot to impeach President Donald Trump. John Bolton won his by publishing a show-and-tell about working for the Trump administration, 2020’s The Room Where It Happened.

Kevin McCarthy wearing a suit and tie: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy speaks during his weekly press briefing on Capitol Hill, April 22, 2021, in Washington. © Andrew Harnik/AP, FILE House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy speaks during his weekly press briefing on Capitol Hill, April 22, 2021, in Washington.

"I haven't heard members concerned about her vote on impeachment, it's more concerned about the job ability to do and what's our best step forward that we can all work together instead of attacking one another," he said.

a close up of Liz Cheney: Rep. Liz Cheney speaks with reporters following a GOP strategy session on Capitol Hill in Washington, April 20, 2021. © J. Scott Applewhite/AP, FILE Rep. Liz Cheney speaks with reporters following a GOP strategy session on Capitol Hill in Washington, April 20, 2021.

Cheney's team was quick to respond.

"This is about whether the Republican Party is going to perpetuate lies about the 2020 election and attempt to whitewash what happened on Jan 6. Liz will not do that. That is the issue," Cheney spokesman Jeremy Adler said in a statement provided to ABC News.

Cheney isn't fighting McCarthy push to replace her in leadership

  Cheney isn't fighting McCarthy push to replace her in leadership The No. 3 House Republican is prepared to choose her beliefs about the influence of Trump.To the frustration of many fellow Republicans, Cheney has continued to clearly state her positions on Donald Trump's baseless claims that the 2020 election was fraudulent and on the Jan. 6 vote to certify Trump's loss. And Cheney has been telling people that if holding onto her leadership role requires having to lie or stay quiet, she doesn’t believe that’s a price worth paying, according to a source familiar with her thinking.

The latest battle in Cheney's political war with President Donald Trump over the election came Monday when Trump put out a statement saying, "The Fraudulent Presidential Election of 2020 will be, from this day forth, known as THE BIG LIE!"

Donald Trump standing in front of a flag: President Donald Trump speaks to crowd before boarding Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Jan. 20, 2021. © Luis M. Alvarez/AP, FILE President Donald Trump speaks to crowd before boarding Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Jan. 20, 2021.

"The 2020 presidential election was not stolen," Cheney tweeted not long after. "Anyone who claims it was is spreading THE BIG LIE, turning their back on the rule of law, and poisoning our democratic system."

Cheney rebuked Trump again on Monday at a closed-door conference in Georgia, where a spokesman confirmed she called Trump’s false election fraud claims "a poison in the bloodstream of our democracy."

MORE: Trump keeps winning rounds in GOP's civil war: The Note

The earliest Republicans could hold a vote on Cheney's leadership position is next Wednesday during a weekly Republican conference meeting, though sources have signaled a vote could take place before the end of the month.

Liz Cheney Reportedly Not Campaigning to Keep GOP Leadership Post Amid Elise Stefanik's Rise

  Liz Cheney Reportedly Not Campaigning to Keep GOP Leadership Post Amid Elise Stefanik's Rise Cheney continues to be critical of former President Donald Trump's false claim of election fraud and his role in the attack on the Capitol on January 6, despite pressure from party leaders and Trump allies in Congress. A closed-door showdown vote by House Republicans on her fate and her replacement is possible next week, according to the Associated Press.According to House GOP aides, Cheney is making little effort to garner support for herself by calling colleagues or enlisting others to lobby on her behalf."Liz will have more to say in the coming days.

Republicans are considering another woman to replace Cheney, sources familiar with the deliberations told ABC News. Some of those names under consideration are Reps. Elise Stefanik, Anne Wagner, and Jackie Walorski, the sources said. Axios was first to report their names.

MORE: House Republicans vote to keep Liz Cheney among leadership in rebuke to Trump loyalists

A spokesperson for Wagner declined to comment. Spokespeople for Reps. Stefanik and Walorski did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

GOP Rep. Jim Banks is also being considered, per a source. The Indiana Republican heads the Republican Study Committee. ABC News has reached out to Banks' office for comment.

The optics of replacing Cheney, the only woman in House Republican leadership, with a white male, would certainly raise some eyebrows at a time when the Republican Party is trying to engage more women and minorities in politics.

Frustration is growing among Republican lawmakers at the continued feud and Cheney's seeming inability to step away from the political battlefield.

Who is Liz Cheney? House Republicans' No. 3, daughter of a VP, Trump critic

  Who is Liz Cheney? House Republicans' No. 3, daughter of a VP, Trump critic Liz Cheney is the elder daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, who held the same GOP leadership position from which she may be ousted.Cheney was one of 10 Republicans in the House to vote for Trump's impeachment over his alleged incitement of the deadly Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, and has since remained firm in her belief that Trump's rhetoric led to the violence.

"GOP members want to focus on the agenda. We have energy issues we want to focus on, and this isn't helping at all," one GOP aide said of the broader intra-party fight.

As a conference chair, Cheney's role is to maintain focus on the party's message, and not necessarily her own, having some in the party admitting she could very well be in jeopardy of losing her leadership post.

"She's there telling the truth, but she needs to think about how effective she is able to be if she's constantly choosing to engage opposite Trump which puts her opposite most of the conference. If she can't develop some message discipline, then what is the point in her retaining the job," another Republican aide told ABC News.

In a secret ballot in February, Republicans voted 145-61 to keep her in the No. 3 position, despite her vote to impeach former President Trump for his alleged role in inciting the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.

McCarthy, who at the time was criticized by colleagues for his shifting statements about Trump’s responsibility for the storming of the U.S. Capitol, endorsed Cheney and encouraged Republicans to keep her on the leadership team.

Now, it appears McCarthy is not as confident in Cheney’s role in leadership as he looks to take back the House in 2022 and win back favor with the former president.

GOP Makes a Choice: Donald Trump Over Liz Cheney

  GOP Makes a Choice: Donald Trump Over Liz Cheney GOP Makes a Choice: Donald Trump Over Liz CheneyWhen Liz Cheney voted to impeach then-President Donald Trump back in January, her fellow Republicans were able to set that aside as a vote of conscience. Cheney, the No. 3 Republican in the House and a mainstay of conservative politics for decades, told her colleagues that she’d never apologize for sticking with her convictions. Even her critics admired the swagger. The attempt to remove her from the post failed by a 61-to-145 margin. If that’s what Cheney believed to be true, so be it.

McCarthy, when asked last week about Cheney’s future, refused to answer when asked whether she remained a good fit as the conference chair.

Cheney has taken heat from other Republicans for statements she has made in recent weeks and months to direct the Republican Party away from Trump.

Trump, in return, has vowed to back a primary challenge to Cheney in her statewide district in Wyoming.

In February, Cheney told reporters that Trump "does not have a role as a leader of our party going forward.”

Last week, she said it is "disqualifying" for any public official who opposed certifying the election results to run for the White House in the future.

At the Republican retreat in Orlando last month, Cheney said that she believes Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy are the heads of the Republican Party and suggested that the GOP can win back the House, Senate and White House in the next elections by conveying to voters that they are a party of "competence and of conservative principles" and by winning back voters they lost in 2020, making subtle digs against the former president without naming him.

One Republican official with knowledge of the matter told ABC News that Cheney is unlikely to lose McConnell’s support, given there’s no need for him to weigh in on the matter. McConnell also has a longstanding relationship with the Cheney’s.

Just last week, conservatives criticized Cheney for fist-bumping President Joe Biden as he walked into the House chamber to deliver his address to a joint session of Congress.

Liz Cheney: House Republicans are preparing to oust No. 3 leader this week. Here's what to watch. .
House Republicans could vote as early as Wednesday to replace Rep. Liz Cheney as GOP conference chair, a move that would underscore former President Donald Trump's firm grip on the party months after leaving office. © Drew Angerer/Getty Images WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 14: Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) attends a press conference following a House Republican caucus meeting on Capitol Hill on April 14, 2021 in Washington, DC. The House Republican members spoke about their recent trip to the southern border and the surge of migrant children entering the United States.

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