Wyoming Republican Rep. Liz Cheney held onto her post in post in House leadership Wednesday night, closing a turbulent chapter in the backlash over her impeachment vote last month.
Cheney kept her job as House Republican Conference chair by an 84-vote margin, surviving the referendum on her role in leadership 145-61. One member voted present.
JUST IN: Liz Cheney has managed to cling on to her leadership job, sources tell me. vote was 145-61
House just voted in a secret ballot to keep her. Comes after tense, four hour meeting where dozens of members spoke their mind.
— Melanie Zanona (@MZanona) February 4, 2021
The movement for a recall was led by the conservative Freedom Caucus after Cheney undermined the conference by voting with Democrats on former President Donald Trump’s impeachment. House members complained Cheney blindsided the rest of the conference she leads when she announced her intent to impeach the Republican president on the eve of the vote.
Impeachment, however, was only part of the party’s frustration. Cheney remained virtually absent and ineffective in House Republicans’ campaign efforts last year, having little to do with fundraising and candidate recruitment. Cheney also backed the primary opponent of Kentucky Rep. Thomas Massie. That opponent ended up facing a racism scandal.
While Cheney survived the referendum, the three-term at-large representative still faces problems at home, where her favorability has plummeted in light of the firestorm she created when she backed Democrats achieving the top item on their policy agenda in the final days of Trump’s presidency.
Hundreds gathered at the Wyoming Capitol building in Cheyenne last week led by Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz to protest Cheney, in a sign of trouble for the state’s only representative. She is also facing a primary challenge from a prominent state senator. Cheney was also censured by members of her own state party.
A poll out last week conducted by Trump pollster John McLaughlin found only 10 percent of GOP primary voters reported willingness to support Cheney in next year’s primary. Only 13 percent of voters said they would support the incumbent if she made to the general.