On Wednesday, a Scalise spokesperson released a statement supporting Cheney's ouster and calling for Stefanik to replace her. "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," Lauren Fine said in a statement.
Trump, who is backing Stefanik's leadership bid, is thrilled with the shakeup. Stefanik voted against certification of the 2020 election, citing a series of fictional "irregularities" and other debunked claims, and Cheney has been a top target for Trump ever since she voted to impeach him over the Jan. 6 insurrection he inspired.
In response to the news that the GOP leadership team had turned on her, Cheney spokesperson Jeremy Adler said, “Liz will have more to say in the coming days. This moment is about much more than a House leadership fight.”
You can say that again. Soon, the entire House Republican leadership team will be in lockstep, spreading the Big Lie in their effort to regain a House majority. Their entire caucus will be working in service of Trump, the baseless lies he has propagated about his 2020 loss, and a shared commitment to rejecting U.S. democracy and the will of the people.
In addition, the battle over Cheney's seat in Wyoming will likely become the most high-profile proxy war between never-Trump establishment Republicans and Trumpers, reality-based Republicans and alternative-fact Republicans, pro-democracy Republicans and fascist Republicans.
If House Republicans as a group didn’t already represent an anti-democratic assault on the American experiment in constitutional democracy, they certainly will now. And the fate of Cheney’s seat alongside McCarthy’s ability to secure a majority by demonstrating his fascist bona fides could serve as a harbinger of where the nation is headed.