As she stood on the floor of the House of Representatives and delivered an impassioned speech, it seems all but likely that Rep. Liz Cheney will not be taking her seat again as the House Republican Conference chair. The knives are out for the Wyoming lawmaker as she openly criticized her party for not standing up to Mr Trump’s false claims to have won the 2020 election, with the top two House Republicans wanting her replaced with a Trump loyalist, Rep. Elise Stefanik.
In her House speech, she said plainly that “those who refuse to accept the rulings of our courts, are at war with the Constitution,” and followed that with a damning indictment of those who continue to perpetuate the false narrative of a stolen 2020 election, saying, “remaining silent and ignoring the lie emboldens the liar.” Cheney has long been a vocal critic of the former president and his antics and has consistently held a position of defiance while many of her colleagues have hitched their wagon to the Trump train.
Despite calls from top and rank-and-file House Republicans to have her replaced due to some perceived disloyalty, Cheney doubled down by adding “I will not sit back and watch in silence while others lead our party down a path that abandons the rule of law and joins the former president’s crusade to undermine our democracy.” She will soon discover whether she will be sitting back and watching from the sidelines as her fate is due to be decided by a simple majority of House Republicans behind closed doors on Wednesday morning.
The ‘stop the steal’ contingent of the GOP has had a few public faces in the form of Rep. Ted Cruz, Rep. Josh Hawley and everyone’s favorite QAnon conspiracy lover, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, to name a few. However, there are far more as, lest we forget, on December 11, 2020, 126 out of 196 Republican members of the House backed a lawsuit filed in the Supreme Court seeking to subvert the election and overturn the election results. But who are some of these Republicans that helped bolster the belief that the election was stolen? We though it was time to highlight a few.
Hyde-Smith has the distinction of being the first woman elected to Congress from Mississippi but had already courted controversy while fighting the special runoff election versus Mike Espy that would secure her seat. During the 2018 runoff campaign she appeared with a cattle rancher and said “If he invited me to a public hanging, I’d be in the front row.” Given the history of lynchings and public executions of African-Americans, the comment faced widespread criticism.
So it would come as little surprise that when it came to contesting the validity of the 2020 election, she would take a front row seat by objecting to Pennsylvania’s electoral votes, as led by Josh Hawley, stating that “the erosion of integrity of the electoral process.” She also said her constituents “do not believe the presidential election was constitutional and cannot accept the Electoral College decision.”
The senior United States Senator from Wisconsin has long been a staunch supporter of Donald Trump and as chairman of the Senate homeland security committee he launched several investigations into Trump’s political opponents, including the current president, Joe Biden. He also claimed that he had an informant with information that the FBI and Department of Justice had conspired against Trump in the 2016 presidential election, although no evidence was ever put forward to back up this claim.
When the 2020 election came and went with a comprehensive Trump defeat, Johnson agreed with several of Trump’s false claims of widespread electoral fraud making unsubstantiated claims of “voter fraud that the mainstream media and, unfortunately, many officials just simply ignore.” He would then go on to claim that the Democrats had “gamed the system,” in other words, they had rigged the election in Wisconsin to favor Biden, another claim that Johnson couldn’t provide a shred of evidence for.
Kennedy began his political career as a Democrat, running for the Senate in in 2004 and 2008 but failing to win, it would only be when he switched allegiances to the Republican party that he would finally win a seat in the Senate representing Louisiana in 2017, but not before suffering another defeat by incumbent Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu in 2008. Kennedy’s successful senatorial campaign would be endorsed by Donald Trump and he would return that support in 2016 and then again in 2020.
When Trump refused to concede, Kennedy announced that he would, along with 11 other Republican senators, object to certain states’ electoral votes unless an audit of the vote took place. When the storming of the Capitol occurred on Jan 6, Kennedy was quick to denounce the attackers saying they should “to go to jail and pay for the destruction they caused.” However, despite this outrage, it didn’t stop him from walking back into the Capitol building once it was secure to object to the certification of Arizona’s electoral votes.
Only recently being sworn in as senator on January 3, 2021, like with her Mississippian counterpart Cindy Hyde-Smith, Lummis has the distinction of being the first woman to represent Wyoming in the Senate and again like Hyde-Smith, she would also contest the validity of Biden’s victory. In the same month she took her seat in the Senate she joined a group of Republican senators led by Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley looking to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
She would vote in support of the objection to Pennsylvania’s electoral votes but against the objection to Arizona’s, when the objections were put to the Senate floor for a vote, both were soundly defeated 92–7 and 93–6 respectively. Strangely, despite her joining the group that contested Biden’s election victory, when it came to confirming his Cabinet nominees, she voted to confirm nine of them.
Another politician that joined the ranks of joined the group of Republican senators led by Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz in support of the objections to Pennsylvania’s and Arizona’s electoral votes was the obstetrician, former U.S. Representative for Kansas’s 1st congressional district and now Senator
from Kansas, Roger Marshall. However, in lieu of any actual evidence of voter fraud, Marshall said that his decision to object to the count came “from my heart.”
In his objection to the election results, Marshall claimed in “several states” “governors, secretaries of states and activist courts” usurped legislatures to create voting rules. Much like with our previous entry John Kennedy. Marshall was outraged when Trump supporters stormed the United States Capitol and called for participants to be “prosecuted to the fullest extent” but was still happy to support the objections to Arizona’s and Pennsylvania’s electoral votes.
The former 45th governor of Florida won his Senate seat in 2019 and recently ran unopposed for the chairmanship of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. Although he considers himself a close ally of Trump, it should be noted that when Trump was at his most Trumpian, Scott was at pains to distance himself from Trump’s more controversial actions.
He also shares Trump’s views on immigration and was one of the most active cheerleaders when it came to building the border wall. So, it would come as little surprise when Trump lost the election that Scott would join the group of Republican senators that contested Biden’s election victory. He voted to object to seating the electors from Pennsylvania but voted against the other objection raised for seating the electors from Arizona.
No sooner than taking office in January 2021, Tuberville would be another senator who joined the group of Republican senators who announced they would formally object to counting electoral votes. Like many other Republican senators, Tuberville voted in support of an objection to Arizona’s electoral votes and an objection to Pennsylvania’s electoral votes, however, the newly elected Republican from Alabama would have a more important role in the eyes of Trump.
While pro-Trump supporters stormed the Capitol and members of the House were taken to a secure location, Tuberville received a call from Trump, well, kind of….. he dialed the wrong number and got Utah senator Mike Lee who gave Tuberville his phone. Trump tried to convince him to make additional objections to the Electoral College vote in a futile effort to block Congress’ certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s win.
To describe the Senator from Tennessee as a staunch conservative and supporter of Donald Trump, would be an understatement, she did nominate him for a Nobel Peace Prize for his negotiations with North Korea after all. Not only would Blackburn join the group of Republicans objecting to the certification of President-elect Joe Biden, but she would go one step further.
Blackburn was instrumental in raising funds to support the Trump campaign’s effort to overturn the election results in court and released a press release stating “It’s a shame that we have to fight for a fair election in the greatest democracy the world has ever known, but we do,” said Senator Blackburn. “One of the best ways to do so is by joining me in donating to the President’s legal defense fund. President Donald Trump has always had our backs, and now, Tennesseans need to have his to make sure every single legally cast ballot is counted.”
Braun, a Republican from Indiana. rejected electors from “disputed states” and just a few days before the count was due to take place, he issued a joint statement vowing his commitment to join the other U.S. Senators calling for a commission to conduct an emergency 10-day audit of the election returns in certain states.
Many observers have noted that Braun’s strategy seems to be that of his counterparts Josh Hawley of Missouri and Ted Cruz of Texas, who have aligned themselves with Trump in order to garner support from his base for their own bids for the presidency in 2024. So, it will be unsurprising if Braun doesn’t follow suit and announce his intentions to run in three years time.
Daines was one of the early supporters of Donald Trump and has done so throughout his presidency, consistently siding with the former president and releasing statements to bolster that. After voting to acquit Trump in his impeachment trial on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress related to his request that Ukraine announce an investigation into Joe Biden, Daines said it was the most partisan impeachment trial in history. He suggested the impeachment was to “overturn the election of 2016 and try to define the election of 2020”
The senator from Montana also joined 11 other Republican senators in that failed attempt to overturn the presidential election results in Arizona and Pennsylvania, but after the events of January 6, he would withdraw his objection.