Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives signaled their solidarity with former President Donald Trump Wednesday, voting to oust Wyoming Representative Liz Cheney from her GOP leadership role. It’s not fully clear how many of Oklahoma’s members voted for her removal.
Cheney's ouster was done by voice vote in private caucus meeting Wednesday morning, some members preferring not to make public how they voted. Clearly, though, a significant majority of the overall caucus supported to move, upset with Cheney for publicly calling out former President Trump for continuing to falsely claim the election was stolen.
"We must go forward based on truth," said Rep. Cheney following the meeting, "we cannot both embrace the big lie and embrace the constitution."
Speaking to a throng of reporters, Cheney said she may have lost her leadership post, but she's not giving up her fight to save the Republican Party and the nation from Donald Trump.
"I will do everything I can," the three-term Republican said, "to ensure that the former president never again gets anywhere near the oval office."
Cheney was one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump in January, believing he tried to undermine the democratic process by inciting the January 6th insurrection. A majority of her colleagues now say her ongoing criticism of the president is dividing the caucus and impeding progress.
“I have enjoyed working with her and she has my utmost respect," said Rep. Stephanie Bice, (R) OK-5, in a statement, "but it’s time for the caucus to focus on our common goals.”
Rep. Kevin Hern, (R) OK-1, called last week for the congresswoman to resign from her Republican Conference Chair post, saying, “[Congresswoman] Cheney has proven that her self-interests outweigh the interest of the conference and the interest of the people we represent.”
Rep. Markwayne Mullin, (R) OK-2, made clear that he supported Cheney's removal, while Congressmen Cole, (R) OK-4, and Lucas, (R) OK-3, have not made public how they voted.
Former President Trump seemed to revel in today's action.
“Liz Cheney is a bitter, horrible human being. I watched her yesterday and realized how bad she is for the Republican Party, Trump said in a statement. “She is a talking point for Democrats, whether that means the Border, the gas lines, inflation, or destroying our economy. She is a warmonger whose family stupidly pushed us into the never-ending Middle East Disaster, draining our wealth and depleting our Great Military, the worst decision in our Country’s history. I look forward to soon watching her as a Paid Contributor on CNN or MSDNC!”
Cheney reportedly told her GOP colleagues before the vote, “If you want leaders who will enable and spread his destructive lies, I’m not your person, you have plenty of others to choose from. That will be their legacy."
It's expected that Cheney will be replaced by New York Rep. Elise Stefanik. A vote is expected Friday.
While no members of the Oklahoma delegation have publicly embraced Cheney’s position, one former Republican congressman from Oklahoma has. Mickey Edwards, who represented the 5th District from 1977 to 1993, is reportedly among 100 influential Republicans who will sign a letter tomorrow urging the party to break with President Trump.