Rep. Chip Roy (R-T) a member of the House Freedom Caucus, told Republican lawmakers in a memo Tuesday that they should consider leaving the GOP conference chair leadership position vacant after ousting Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) from the role.
In the memo, Roy made clear that he believes removing Cheney as conference chair is the correct decision, but then called out Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) — who has been vying for the leadership position — and argued that Republicans must avoid installing someone who campaigns with the GOP but then votes to advance the Democratic agenda in office.
“Consider your response if I asked if you would — setting aside any friendship or personal feelings about him or her — support a colleague with the following record to be our spokesperson,” Roy wrote, who then listed off portions of Stefanik’s record, including:
Opposition to the Trump tax cuts of 2017
Support for an amendment overriding Trump’s transgender troops policy
Voting for the Equality Act the first time it was introduced (voting against in 2021)
Voting to ban drilling in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico
Voting for the “Delivering for America Act — playing into Democratic Party conspiracy theory that President Trump was trying to destroy the post office”
Voting to override Trump’s border wall funding through SJ Res 54
Co-sponsoring “permanent status for Dreamers without any actual badly needed border security to stem the tide of the crisis” in the 115th Congress
After arguing Stefanik was not a good choice for the position, Roy suggested that Republicans either coalesce around a candidate with conservative values or consider leaving the position vacant.
Stefanik, who has support from Trump, told reporters that she has support from other members of the Freedom Caucus and others, reports POLITICO. If Cheney were ousted and Stefanik chosen to replace her, Stefanik has said she will only serve one term.
Roy originally opposed removing Cheney from leadership after she voted to impeach former President Donald Trump. However, Roy later argued that Cheney should be removed for making comments “completely out of step of the Republican conference.”
“You cannot stand up and make a statement that is so completely out of step of the Republican conference where the American people who support President Trump are,” Roy said in late February, per CNN. “I think it is unfortunate she made those remarks, I think it was shortsighted, but I also think it was purposeful and I think that’s the problem.”
Cheney has given no indication she plans to step down, and recently defended herself in a Washington Post op-ed amidst the threat to her position. .
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