There has been increased talk as to which GOP member could replace House Republican Chair Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., should she be ousted from her leadership position. The second-ranking GOP member, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, has reportedly backed Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y.
Lauren Fine, Scalise’s spokeswoman, told the Washington Examiner on Wednesday that “House Republicans need to be solely focused on taking back the House in 2022 and fighting against Speaker Pelosi and President Biden’s radical socialist agenda, and Elise Stefanik is strongly committed to doing that, which is why Whip Scalise has pledged to support her for Conference Chair.”
Spokesman Harrison Fields for Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., told The Federalist on Wednesday that Donalds’ “feelings have not changed” in terms of support for ousting Cheney. He also mentioned that Donalds thinks there needs to be a conference to “debate it out.”
“He holds firm in his position that Cheney needs to go,” Fields said. “His position is that the conference has to come together and have a robust discussion, a competitive discussion, about who will take the next position.”
The Louisiana congressman becomes part of several others who have been vocal in recent days. Axios reported a hot mic moment Tuesday in which House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said he “lost confidence” in Cheney.
“I think she’s got real problems,” McCarthy said prior to an interview on “Fox & Friends” with Steve Doocy. “I’ve had it with her. You know, I’ve lost confidence. … Well, someone just has to bring a motion, but I assume that will probably take place.”
In the “Fox and Friends” interview on air, McCarthy noted that other GOP members are “concerned” about keeping Cheney in a leadership position and “carry out the message.” Cheney has made a point to diverge from the America First-centric Republican Party and survived a referendum in February led by The Freedom Caucus to oust her as Conference Chair.
“Liz will have more to say in the coming days” and “[t]his is about much more than a House leadership fight,” Cheney spokesman Jeremy Adler said to the Examiner.