Politics Pelosi's office steps into fight between Republican leaders Cheney and McCarthy
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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office boosted thebetween House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and House Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., as the ongoing divide could put a dent in Republican efforts to take back the House next fall.
"Word is out that House GOP Leaders are looking to push Rep. Liz Cheney from her post as House Republican Conference Chair — their most senior woman in GOP leadership — for a litany of very Republican reasons: she won’t lie, she isn’t humble enough, she’s like a girlfriend rooting for the wrong team, and more," Pelosi's office said in a blog posted to her website.
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.
That comment comes as thebetween McCarthy and Cheney, the third-highest ranking House Republican, appears to be reaching a boiling point following the Capitol riot.
Cheney has refused to back down from her criticisms of former President Donald Trump, despite growing pressure from other Republicans. She was the highest-ranking Republican to vote to impeach Trump for his role in inciting the Jan. 6 riot, and has beenover embracing Trump and entertaining his election claims since then. She has repeatedly and forcefully rejected Trump's stolen election lie.
Cheney's position has her at odds with McCarthy, who has tried to keep his conference aligned with the former president. Afterfor the riot — though he voted hours after the attack to block the counting of some electoral votes for Biden — McCarthy has worked to get back into the former president's good graces, including visiting Trump at his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida.
Vote to oust Liz Cheney puts spotlight on House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy, a Trump loyalist
Rep. Liz Cheney angered Kevin McCarthy, a staunch Trump ally, over her criticisms of the former president and his false claims of election fraud. Cheney – whose father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, was an institution in Republican politics for decades – faces a vote Wednesday to oust her as House GOP conference chair. © Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy challenged the election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris but welcomed them after the inauguration, speaking of a need "to bind this nation's wounds.
Speaking with "Fox and Friends" on Tuesday, McCarthy said "there's no concern about" Cheney's impeachment vote from fellow House Republicans.
"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, adding, "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."
A Cheney spokesperson, Jeremy Adler, said in a statement to NBC News following McCarthy's remarks: "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," Adler said. "That is the issue."
Democrats currently own a slim 218-212 House majority over the GOP. With historical trends pointing against the party in power during a new president's first midterms, Republicans are confident they can retake the majority without much of a boost.
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.
The latest episode kicked off Monday after Cheney tweeted that anyone claiming the 2020 presidential election was stolen is "poisoning our democratic system," a direct response to a Trump statement from earlier in the day.
Cheney also warned Monday the GOP should not "whitewash" the riot, telling a crowd of donors and scholars during an off-the-record interview with former House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., at the annual American Enterprise Institute retreat: "We can't embrace the notion the election is stolen."
"It's a poison in the bloodstream of our democracy," Cheney said in. An aide familiar with the comments confirmed the accuracy of to NBC News. "We can't whitewash what happened on January 6 or perpetuate Trump's big lie. It is a threat to democracy. What he did on Jan. 6 is a line that cannot be crossed."
While Cheney has emerged as Trump's most powerful House Republican critic, an attempt in February by Trump allies to strip her of her leadership post failed overwhelmingly, 145 to 61.
The lopsided vote came by secret ballot, indicating broad private support for Cheney inside the conference, even though many have been wary of speaking out publicly for fear of igniting Trump's wrath.
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.