House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy rejects calls within the Republican Caucus to remove Rep. Liz Cheney from party leadership over her vote to impeach President Donald Trump, a McCarthy spokesperson confirmed to POLITICO on Thursday.
A number of GOP members have demanded Cheney be ousted from her conference chair position after she became the highest-ranking House Republican to vote for Trump’s impeachment on Wednesday. Cheney was also the second House Republican to openly endorse impeachment on a count of inciting insurrection, in a scathing statement she issued on Tuesday night.
“There has never been a greater betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution,” Cheney wrote in the statement, blaming Trump for inciting a mob of rioters to trash the Capitol last week.
The blowback from some of Cheney’s Trump-loyal colleagues was swift. Members of the Freedom Caucus wrote a petition to debate her ouster Wednesday from her leadership position. In response, Cheney reiterated that she had no plans to step down.
“I’m not going anywhere. This is a vote of conscience,” the Wyoming lawmaker told POLITICO on Wednesday.
The Washington Examiner first reported McCarthy’s opposition to Cheney’s ouster.
Cheney was directly singled out in the insurrection on the Capitol after Trump named her in his speech to his supporters just before they stormed the building.
“We’ve got to get rid of the weak Congresspeople, the ones that aren’t any good, the Liz Cheneys of the world,” Trump said.
Five people died as a result of the Capitol attack.