Congressional Republicans move to purge Liz Cheney from leadership

Congressional Republicans move to purge Liz Cheney from leadership

The Republican Party in the House of Representatives is moving decisively to purge Representative Liz Cheney, the third-ranking member of the leadership, over her continued denunciation of Donald Trump’s claims that the 2020 election was stolen.

On Tuesday, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy made it clear on Fox News that he had “lost confidence” in Cheney. And on Wednesday, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, the second-ranking Republican, called for Cheney’s removal and threw his support to Representative Elise Stefanik of New York, one of the main defenders of Trump during two impeachment trials.

Liz Cheney (Photo: Wikipedia)

The next meeting of the Republican House Conference is next Wednesday, May 12, and if any member demands a vote, there will be a secret ballot that Cheney is certain to lose. A second ballot would then choose her replacement in the congressional leadership.

Cheney is a diehard reactionary with a long record of advocating imperialist war and repression, going back to her years as a Fox News commentator, after her father Dick Cheney completed his term as vice president. She was particularly vitriolic in her opposition to individuals like Julian Assange and Edward Snowden, who exposed the crimes of American imperialism.

She has become a target today because she has vociferously opposed the claim by Trump that the 2020 election was stolen and held him responsible for the violent attack on Congress on January 6 by Trump supporters seeking to block the certification of the electoral votes that gave Joe Biden his victory. She was one of 10 House Republicans, who voted to impeach Trump for his role on January 6.

In February, McCarthy opposed an effort to remove Cheney as chair of the House Republican Conference, and she won a secret ballot vote easily, by a margin of better than two to one. Since then, however, Trump has consolidated his grip on the Republican Party, at both the state and national levels.

There is, of course, a certain irony in Liz Cheney being removed because she will not go along with what she called Trump’s “big lie” about the 2020 elections. Through her father, she is forever associated with a previous “big lie,” the claim by Vice President Cheney and President George W. Bush that Iraq had “weapons of mass destruction,” which justified their invasion and occupation of the country in 2003.

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